Originally published at https://www.postwrestling.com/2018/01/04/first-smackdown-of-2018-draws-strong-number/
The first edition of SmackDown Live for 2018 was a big success on the USA Network.
The show averaged 2,720,000 viewers throughout the two-hour show and built to a non-title match between A.J. Styles and Sami Zayn in the main event with Daniel Bryan, Shane McMahon and Kevin Owens ringside.
The number is SmackDown’s highest dating back to September 12th, which was a big show built around the return of Vince McMahon to television featuring the physical angle with Owens that night.
Only six episodes of SmackDown Live had higher averages throughout all of 2017.
The SmackDown number was only 140,000 viewers short of the Raw average of Monday, which did 2,860,000 viewers on New Year’s Day.