WWE Smackdown Ratings Report (9/15): The Rock’s unadvertised appearance and Cena’s advertised appearance leads to boost in viewership and rating


Last Friday’s episode of WWE Smackdown (9/15) drew 2.570 million viewers, the highest since the episode paying tribute to Bray Wyatt on Aug. 25 which drew 2.647 million viewers. Three of the previous five episode had drawn just under 2.1 million, so this was a substantial increase.

Friday’s episode featured an unadvertised, but buzz-generated live appearance by The Rock at the start of the show and an advertised appearance by John Cena at the end of the show as a guest on “The Grayson Waller Effect.”

WWE heavily promoted via social media Rock’s appearance as it was taking place live on Fox, which could have given a boost to the viewership beyond the expected boost for the advertised line-up featuring Cena.

In the key 18-49 demo, it drew a 0.70 rating, up from 0.53 the prior week. Other than the Bray Wyatt tribute episode, it was the highest rating since July 7 which featured “The Trial of the Tribal Chief” as the main hook for the episode.

Wrestlenomics reported a peak rating of 2.803 million for Q1 with the opening segment featuring The Rock, Pat McAfee, and Austin Theory. The second quarter hour drew a strong 2.787 million viewers. The rest of the show’s quarter hours averaged between 2.429 million and 2.533 million, so a significantly higher number of viewers than typically watch Smackdown stuck around for the rest of the episode.

The average viewership for Smackdown since June 1 is 2.297 million viewers. The same 16 week period in 2022 averaged 2.114 million viewers.

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