The first WWE Raw episode of 2022 saw the show hit its highest viewership mark since the draft last October.
The January 3rd edition of the show following the Day 1 “premium live event” averaged 1,716,000 viewers and approximately 592,000 (0.45) in the 18-49 demographic, per Brandon Thurston of Wrestlenomics and Showbuzz Daily.
It was Raw’s best performance in overall viewers since the October 4th edition featuring the draft and the highest 18-49 figure since November 29th.
Viewership was up 8 percent from last week but the large increases saw adults 18-34 rise by 22 percent including males 18-34 growing from 80,000 to 128,000 this week, according to data from Wrestlenomics.
Males 18-49 increased by 24 percent this week and adults 35-49 were up by 6 percent.
The show opened with 1,807,000 viewers and 0.49 in 18-49 featuring new WWE champion Brock Lesnar appearing at the start of the show and advertised earlier in the day for that kickoff spot. This was the most-watched hour of Raw since the draft.
In hour two, the show fell to 1,716,000 viewers and 0.45 in 18-49 and the final hour dropped to 1,627,000 and 0.42. It was the highest third hour of Raw since November 1st in overall viewership.
Throughout the three hours, viewership fell by 10 percent while the 18-49 rating dropped 14 percent. The largest loss throughout the show was 16 percent among males 18-49 and 12 percent declines throughout the show with females 18-49 and adults 18-34. Females 12-34 grew by 8 percent.
The episode was highlighted by Lesnar’s appearance and a show-long build to the main event fatal 4-way between Seth Rollins, Bobby Lashley, Kevin Owens, and Big E. to determine the WWE championship challenger at the Royal Rumble later this month.
Raw went against the Monday Night Football game on ESPN between Cleveland and Pittsburgh that averaged 11,781,000 and 3.07 in 18-49. The game was simulcast on the NFL Network with 1,475,000 viewers and 0.52 in 18-49.
In Canada, Raw averaged approximately 234,800 viewers and 140,200 in the 25-54 demographic on Sportsnet 360. It was a large increase from last week’s average of 164,700 viewers and 65,000 in the demo. It was the most-watched episode of Raw in Canada since September 13th.