This week, for the first time in ten weeks post-draft, there has been a dispute as to which of the two were better shows. The general consensus is that Smackdown Live was better, making the score 8-2 over Monday Night Raw. However, minus the Dolph Ziggler-Miz segment, many believed the show was one of the weaker ones that the blue brand had put out since the draft.
The series of Randy Orton-Bray Wyatt segments impersonating a horror film definitely did not help the cause. However, the main event of Smackdown Live was announced a week in advance – a Backlash rematch between AJ Styles and Dean Ambrose for the WWE World Championship. Whoever won would be the WWE World Champion heading into No Mercy in the triple threat match involving John Cena as well. The match ended when AJ Styles beat Dean Ambrose with a roll-up pin after John Cena caused a distraction.
With Monday Night Raw having gone head to head with the Presidential debate, many expected that Raw would hit below 2 million viewers, but they managed to get 2.478, which is incidentally still the lowest in the history of the show. Many anticipated that Smackdown Live would finally beat Raw in the ratings this week, but it looks like that wasn’t the case.
Tuesday’s episode of Smackdown Live brought in a 0.74 rating and 2.34 million viewers, up 2% from last week’s 0.73 demographic rating and 2.292 million viewers. It was close to Raw’s 0.84 demo rating and 2.478 million viewers.
Smackdown Live ranked #1 on the night among cable originals, defeating OWN’s Chrisley Knows Best (0.67 demo rating, 1.830 million viewers).
Smackdown Live has been creeping up to Raw in terms of viewership and narrowly beating it. The fact that Raw is still the flagship show speaks for itself as despite deteriorating quality over the last few weeks, going head to head with Monday Night Football and also the presidential debate, it still managed to beat the blue brand.
It also appears that promoting the World Championship match heavily for a week did not really help the blue brand as much. Smackdown Live featured only three full matches, while the rest of the show was backstage segments and other promos. However, time is easier to fill in the two-hour space. It may only be a matter of time before the blue brand scores its first rating victory over Raw.
For the latest WWE news, live coverage and rumours, visit our Sportskeeda WWE section.