SmackDown holds steady against NBA, MLB & Trump news coverage

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Friday Night SmackDown finished above 2.1 million viewers this past week on Fox on a night where news coverage was enormous due to Donald Trump.

Friday’s episode following the Clash of Champions pay-per-view finished with 2,155,000 viewers and a 0.6 rating in the 18-49 demographic.

The cable news outlets saw surges in viewership Friday due to the news that President Donald Trump and wife Melania had tested positive for COVID-19 with Trump being taken to the Walter Reed National Military Medical Center that evening.

Additionally, ABC carried Game 2 of the NBA Finals between the L.A. Lakers and Miami Heat that did 6,609,000 viewers and a 2.4 rating among the 18-49 demographic. The cable charts were topped by the MLB Wild Card Game between the St. Louis Cardinals and San Diego Padres that averaged 2,599,000 viewers and a 0.59 demo rating.

SmackDown went against the pre-game coverage of the NBA game beginning at 8:30 pm Eastern and the entirety of the MLB game that started at 7.

It was Friday Night SmackDown’s second-best number since August 21st and topped the average of the past two episodes. Since moving SmackDown to the ThunderDome in August coupled with the return of Roman Reigns, SmackDown has done a 0.6 demo rating each week since August 21st except for the September 11th episode that fell to a 0.5 rating.

In Canada, SmackDown was the second most-watched sports broadcast that night with 180,600 viewers and 84,300 in the 25-54 demographic on Sportsnet 360 trailing the NBA game. The one-hour edited version of NXT that aired as a lead-in to SmackDown averaged 75,500 and WWE Main Event did 74,500 immediately following SmackDown with both finishing among the top ten sports programs that night.