WWE SmackDown on FOX has been a huge disappointment so far, according to Blake Oestriecher at Forbes.com. It’s pointed out how morale among the roster which was already down, has taken an even bigger hit. Also mentions how viewership has dropped from around 4 million on the premiere episode, down to 2.3 million this past week.
Morale within WWE, already down throughout much of 2019, is said to “have taken an even bigger hit” since SmackDown’s jump to its new network as the expected “boom period” for pro wrestling simply hasn’t happened yet.
While SmackDown’s FOX debut on October 4 averaged nearly four million viewers, that viewership plummeted by nearly one million viewers by week two and another 500,000 viewers by week three. A month and a half later, a SmackDown show that averaged 3.869 million viewers its first night on FOX averaged a lackluster 2.325 million viewers this past week.
While FOX officials are playing it cool and expressing satisfaction with those numbers, SmackDown’s overall product and its shrinking audience have to be considered major disappointments, especially considering how much money FOX is shelling out for the rights to broadcast the blue brand’s programming.
Even though SmackDown on FOX would seemingly grow WWE’s fan base due to the added exposure WWE gets from being on a significantly better network, wrestling fans haven’t been able to overlook the poor product WWE has been producing on SmackDown, which has had very little sense of direction for most of its stars.
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