NXT's USA Network Premiere Breaks One Million Viewers in Ratings

The television ratings for the first episode of NXT's weekly live show on the USA Network are in, and they're right about where many experts were expecting. The one-hour episode an average viewership of 1.179 million according to Showbuzz Daily with a 0.43 rating in the 18-49 demographic. That put it fourth pace in the key demographic behind American Horry Story (FX), Basketball Wives and Black Ink Crew (VH1).

The show will air two hours each week live on USA starting on Oct. 2, but for the first two weeks the show's second hour has been shunted to the WWE Network due to Suits airing its final two episodes. It's worth noting that the original series placed 24th on the night.

For context, Raw had 2.27 million viewers across three hours on Monday this week going up against Monday Night Football. SmackDown's ratings stayed relatively flat compared to the week before a 2.064 million.

Some of the noteworthy moments from Wednesday night's episode included Roderick Strong defeating Velveteen Dream for the NXT North American Championship, Candice LaRae winning a four-way to earn a shot at Shayna Baszler's NXT Women's Championship, Lio Rush returning to television and earning a shot at the Cruiserweight Championship by beating Oney Lorcan and Matt Riddle and Killian Dian's Street Fight ending in a locker room brawl.

Two matches were booked for future episodes throughout the night, as Dain and Riddle will compete in a Street Fight again next week for a shot at Adam Cole's NXT Championship and LaRae will challenge Baszler on the Oct. 2 episode.

Triple H hosted a media conference call after the episode aired and stated that Vince McMahon was watching the show live and gave it a positive review.

"He sent me a few texts after the show," he continued. "He watched the entire thing. I'm sure he was at the office, probably in a meeting while he was doing it. But he enjoyed it, he loved it. He thought the talent did a hell of a job, thought they knocked it out of the park. He was excited, he sent me a massive congratulations after it was over, and was thrilled with the product."


He also addressed some of the technical difficulties viewers had switching from USA to the WWE Network. With so many viewers trying to jump on at once, the network crashed for certain viewers.

"I don't believe it was a massive widespread thing," he said. "Bad news travels fast, but I don't believe it was as big as it was put out there to be. I think there was a select grouping of people that couldn't log in."