As has become the norm after Premium Live Events, WWE issued a press release this morning (May 8) covering the impressive performance of last Saturday’s Backlash show from San Juan, Puerto Rico.
Aided by a popular product overall, which includes “co-main events” featuring the red-hot-despite-his-WrestleMania-loss Cody Rhodes and the Mysterio family feud that added PR’s own Bad Bunny for Backlash, May 6’s card at Coliseo de Puerto Rico José Miguel Agrelot broke event-specific gate and merchandise records. Backlash 2023 also continued the trend of setting new standards for home viewership numbers, driven by the (WWE-assisted) growth of Peacock, the Comcast-owned platform which currently owns domestic streaming rights to WWE Network.
And of course, it wouldn’t be a WWE public relations/marketing hype piece these days without
me using the headline for a Tout gag some sponsorship talk.
Here’s the presser:
WWE® DELIVERS RECORD-BREAKING BACKLASH IN PUERTO RICO
STAMFORD, Conn., May 8, 2023 – WWE® (NYSE: WWE) today announced that WWE Backlash®, which emanated from the Coliseo de Puerto Rico José Miguel Agrelot in San Juan, Puerto Rico, became WWE’s highest-grossing and most-viewed Backlash in company history.
Viewership of Backlash saw a 28 percent increase versus the record set in 2022. The event, which featured Bad Bunny, the most-streamed music artist in the world, marked the largest gate ever for any WWE event held in Puerto Rico and the largest gate in the history of Backlash.
More than 34,800 fans descended on San Juan, Puerto Rico, for back-to-back sellout nights of SmackDown (16,896 attendees) and Backlash (17,944 attendees). It also marked the most social Backlash of all-time, led by over 40 million views of the San Juan Street Fight featuring Bad Bunny vs. Damien Priest. The hashtag #WWEBacklash, accompanied by a custom Bad Bunny emoji, trended No. 1 across the entire evening of sports.
In addition, Backlash broke merchandise and sponsorship records. As the first-ever WWE event under the expanded partnership with Fanatics overseeing the on-site event retail experience, top-selling items included the WWE Backlash and LWO Puerto Rico t-shirts. Sponsorship revenue surpassed any Backlash event in history, breaking last year’s record with a 98 percent year-on-year increase through partnerships with Netflix’s FUBAR, Mike’s Harder Lemonade and Xfinity.