The 2020 edition of the WWE Draft took place on October 9 on SmackDown and October 12 on RAW, which saw Superstars traded between the two brands. The WWE Universe has opined that the Blue brand got the better picks in the draft, which Paul Heyman agreed on as well.
Dave Meltzer of Wrestling Observer Newsletter has now revealed why SmackDown got the top storylines after the WWE Draft and why the big stars were moved to the Blue brand.
Why SmackDown got the better programs than RAW in the WWE Draft
The report stated that WWE did this on purpose to please those at FOX, which airs the SmackDown show every Friday. Meltzer said that WWE feel that their relationship with FOX is more important than that of USA Network, which airs RAW every Monday night. Meltzer said that WWE are guaranteed their show on the USA Network as the network requires a brand like RAW each week.
Meanwhile, FOX may not need SmackDown if viewership is low as they have been concetrating on sports programmes lately. At the moment the viewership figures for SmackDown are good enough for FOX, but if there is a dip in viewership figures there may be some issues in renegotiating a new deal for WWE SmackDown on FOX in the future.
SmackDown moved from the USA Network to FOX last year and WWE signed a five-year deal with FOX to air the Blue brand on Friday nights.
SmackDown got several big names from the Red brand in the 2020 WWE Draft, with the likes of Seth Rollins, Rey and Dominik Mysterio, Murphy, Kevin Owens, and The Street Profits, moving over the Blue brand.
Paul Heyman recently revealed why he felt that SmackDown got the better deal in the WWE Draft this year:
"I think Friday Night SmackDown got the better of the draft. Perhaps the best of the draft was right off the top when SmackDown’s first pick was Roman Reigns. The fact that this network can keep Roman Reigns as their premiere star on Friday nights on network is the determining factor: SmackDown won the draft this year and perhaps scored the greatest draft pick in the history of the WWE Draft."
Roman Reigns has been one of the stars on WWE programming in the last few months and him staying on SmackDown will help the Blue brand fare well with viewership figures.Published 19 Oct 2020, 17:19 IST