SPOTLIGHTED PODCAST ALERT (YOUR ARTICLE BEGINS A FEW INCHES DOWN)...
The March 11 episode of WWE Monday Night Raw on USA Network drew a 1.97 rating, essentially even with the prior week’s 1.98 rating. What was most notable is the steady ratings hour to hour. The first-to-third hour drop-off was just 86,000, well below the 422,000 average for the year. Advertising a Roman Reigns match, which turned into a beatdown angle and then a Dean Ambrose vs. Drew McIntyre main event, along with Kurt Angle’s big announcement and the Batista-Triple H “face-to-face” (from great distance) was a ratings winner for WWE.
The first hour drew 2.838 million, the second hour 2.866 million, and the third hour 2.752 million. Those were good for 1.0 ratings each hour in the key 18-49 demographic. The next-best rating was 0.7 for VH1 “Love & Hip Hop.” Only two shows drew better than half the total 18-49 demo rating of Raw.
The 1.97 this week is below the year-ago 2.24 and the two-years-ago rating of 2.21. So despite ruling Monday night cable ratings, there’s still a significant percentage drop-off compared to prior years. Topping cable ratings, though, softens the blow certainly and allows WWE to deflect any internal concern and write it off as an industry TV trend with changing viewing habits.
The current average for 2019 is 1.89. A year ago through this week, the average rating was 2.23.