The Wednesday Night Ratings - 3/9/20
Welcome back to what was an up and down week for ratings that could have big ramification for weekly wrestling TV down the line. If you enjoy reading these then a share would be deeply appreciated. And as always you can find last weeks article here: https://www.prowrestlingmusings.com/post/the-wednesday-night-wars-28-08-2020
AEW had a pretty good week, it was their first uncontested Wednesday night and despite the competition from the NBA their ratings held up pretty well. They got 928k in P2+ which will definitely lead to a lot of "Ha AEW can't even hit a million" takes but I think is pretty good, it's their best number since week 1 of the pandemic which was against much weaker competition. In P18-49 the numbers are similar, they scored a 0.36 which is their second best since January 15th (tied with the February 5th number). The only other major note is that this is the first week that NXT beat them in F12-34 since June 24th, with NXT scoring a 0.11 to Dynamite's 0.10.
NXT had their first week of being pre-empted and moved to Tuesday because of the NHL. They advertised a major title match with a 60-minute 4-Way Iron Man match and the draw was definitely a draw. Despite being on a new night they drew 849,000 total viewers which was up 3% from last week and their second best number since November, only being beaten by the 853k from 2 weeks ago. The P18-49 tells a similar story, they were up 8.3% to a 0.26 which is their best number since the end of December last year, the one time they ever beat AEW head-to-head in that rating. The 0.26 also gave them a 10th place finish which is their best placing since the first head-to-head week. If these impressive numbers hold up next week in the Tuesday slot then I can really see USA moving NXT before the end of 2020.
Raw had a worse week overall. The show after Payback didn't hold up as well as I expected and could be the show that starts to prove the Thunderdome can't hold fans long term. Obviously it's only one week and a few more are needed to show a pattern but this is one to watch. They were down 6.5% in P2+ (2,028,000 to 1,896,000) and an even more striking 12.5% in P18-49, (0.67 to 0.58). The P18-49 is still better than everything except last week and the first few weeks of the pandemic.
Smackdown had a fairly uneventful week. Their reaction to Summerslam included Roman Reigns' return to the brand and a build for a title match at Payback but still didn't manage to really draw any new viewers. They were up 0.6% in P2+ and stayed even in P18-49 at 0.26, with the error margins that Nielson has these are both just a wash with last week. With this week seeing Roman as a new champion, fingers crossed they can build on these 2 (still pretty good) numbers
Below is all of the raw data to compare for yourself and if you have any questions I'm always available @WhyIsChester