There's no denying that WWE's product of late has felt, shall we say, less than must-see. Now, the numbers are starting to reflect that in a major way.
Just one week after fans and pundits were dubbing the November 26th edition of RAW the worst in the history of the show, WWE followed it up this week with what ended up being the least-watched RAW broadcast in company history.
Monday night's RAW drew an average of 2.285 million viewers, down from 2.369 million last week. When it comes down to the hourly viewership, the first hour of RAW drew 2.262 million viewers, the second hour 2.399 million, and the third hour 2.196 million.
It was surprising that the show started out with such low viewership in the first hour and then grew for the second hour. Typically during the fall, viewership drops off for the second hour due to Monday Night Football.
All in all, 2018 has been a bad year for RAW viewership. They set the all time low earlier this year, and last week's show was the 4th lowest viewership in RAW history.
Many will point to the fact that people take-in television shows and live sports much different these days than they did 10 and 15 years ago. That is certainly true and does impact ratings to some extent. However, there's no denying that WWE has experienced a downward trend for several years now.
In the end, do the television ratings affect WWE's bottom line? When it comes to advertising rates, it could. But clearly the networks haven't been spooked by the company's slide in the television ratings over the last few years. After all, FOX just paid $1 billion for the rights to SmackDown.
Unsurprisingly, Monday Night Football won the rating wars on Monday evening with the game drawing 11.237 million viewers. RAW finished in ninth place for the night on cable, also being defeated by the Monday Night Football kickoff show, SportsCenter following the game, the Rachel Maddow Show, Tucker Carlson Tonight, Hannity, and various coverage on the death of President George H.W. Bush.