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WWE News: SmackDown Live loses this week's ratings war

Despite doling out an eventful episode, SmackDown Live! loses terribly to Raw.

Raw has an unfair advantage when it comes to the rating war.

What’s the story?

There is a rating war going on in WWE and it is SmackDown’ s turn to lose to Raw this week. Despite rolling out an eventful episode, SmackDown lost terribly to Raw in the rating war between the WWE brands. 

SmackDown lost the rating war to Raw decisively this week. SmackDown Live! only generated 2.59 million views for Dean Ambrose winning the Intercontinental Championship, while the return of Goldberg helped Raw to trounce SmackDown Live! with 3.04 million viewers. 

In case you didn’t know...

Last week, WWE decided to bring back the rating war concept that helped WWE establish their dominance in the wrestling industry during the Attitude Era. With no one else to compete with them, WWE decided to use their two separate brands to emulate the rating war.

The concept was brought into play when SmackDown defeated Raw in the ratings for the previous episode. Though SmackDown only defeated Raw with a heavy card featuring PPV level matches, the incident sparked a much-needed proverbial shot to the arm in WWE programming.   

The heart of the matter

The rating war was declared by Stephanie McMahon during this week's Raw. She expressed her disgust regarding Raw losing to SmackDown past week by ripping off General Manager Mick Foley and Universal Champion Kevin Owens in a vicious manner. 

But, it looks like the return of Goldberg has aided Raw this week to become the superior brand once more. While Raw had the spectacular return of Goldberg, SmackDown Live! had nothing big along that veins. SmackDown delivered a quality show but still lacked the star power to win the newly proclaimed rating war.

What next?

It is back to the drawing board for SmackDown Live! SmackDown will try to put on a better show next week to have any hopes of winning the rating war once more. With the depleted roster SmackDown Live! has, it will probably need a miracle to win the rating war once more.

While SmackDown has prepared for next week in a grand manner by fielding three huge matches in the form of American Alpha vs Wyatt Family for the Tag Team Championship, John Cena vs Baron Corbin and Natalya vs Nikki Bella, they are doomed to lose next week also. It is simply because of the grand return of The Undertaker and Shawn Michaels Raw will be showcasing next week.

Sportskeeda’s Take

Though the concept pf a rating war is a good one, we are not sure about the execution of it. For one, Raw has an unfair advantage with three hours of programming and more star power when it comes to obtaining gross ratings. Add the preferential treatment of Raw by WWE management into the mix, one can see clearly how SmackDown is doomed to lose from the beginning. 

Let’s hope the SmackDown creative team pulls off a miracle to reduce this unfair advantage. 

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