SmackDown Live set to become flagship show for WWE programming

Many believe that SmackDown has been the 80s show for quite some time for WWE programming. While this may be true, and backed by ratings, raw has always been the flag ship program.

Mentioned every week by Michael Cole, Monday night raw is the longest running episodic television program in history celebrating over 25 years of consistent programming. Although the history runs deep, and the star power is through the roof, Monday night raw just doesn’t pull the ratings that smack down live is able to pull. A lot of that has to do with a three hour show compared to two for Smackdown, and a lot of complaints of poor booking and creative writing.

Although the history runs deep, and the star power is through the roof, Monday night raw just doesn’t pull the ratings that SmackDown live is able to pull. A lot of that has to do with a three hour show compared to two for smacked him, and a lot of complaints over booking and creative writing. I WWE reached a $1 billion deal with Fox and Fox sports that goes into effect October 4, 2019. Affectively SmackDown live will be moving from Tuesday night to Friday nights and will be aired on Fox.

Much like raw, SmackDown had been featured on the USA network for many years. Yes don’t get me wrong, USA has more than its fair share of viewers, but nothing comes close to the viewership of basic cable networks. The move to Fox on primetime, and Friday nights with frankly the television sucks, is going to be huge for not only the WWE but also SmackDown live. Fox has been very open about wanting smackDown to be the flag ship program of WWE, and about how they won professional wrestling to be legitimized.

This goes much further than just the programming however, as I believe that multiple stars will make the move from raw to SmackDown. The biggest name I see changing brands is going to be Ronda Rousey. This move makes as much sense as any, as bringing in a legitimate combat sport champion is the best way to legitimize professional wrestling.

I also think that the company is going to invest the majority of their time, and creative work, and to smack down live on Friday nights. I don’t think Raw’s ratings will necessarily drop, or that it will go as far as going off the air or changing nights. It’s believed by many though, that much like a new up-and-coming superstar, SmackDown is about to get the push of a lifetime.

-Joe Pegoraro

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