There’s something about WWE programming that is changing, even if it’s slight. The last two weeks on WWE Raw had a different feel. For the first time in a while, there was a focus on the wrestling part of the show. Even though Dolph Ziggler feels differently about how the wrestling is prioritized in the WWE.
wrestling is the least important thing about the wrestling business https://t.co/ec4BT1tPTC
— Dolph Ziggler (@HEELZiggler) November 3, 2015
Despite what Ziggler believes, the last few weeks proved otherwise. An emphasis on the wrestling part of WWE was finally put in front of scripted promos and lackadaisical writing. The tournament to determine the No.1 contender to Seth Rollins’ WWE World Heavyweight championship and the on-par grappling that took place on WWE Raw Monday evening are both great examples of that phenomena.
Now, that takes care of the flagship show for the WWE. What about the other television shows? WWE NXT is in a class of its own at the moment and isn’t going to drop down from their euphoria anytime soon. Everything else is an afterthought. Unfortunately, that includes WWE Smackdown. What used to be considered as a great wrestling program turned into a replay of Monday Night Raw.
Wishing that it was something other than that is a pipe dream at this point. It’s unfortunate that many must be critical of Smackdown, but facts are facts. In 2016, WWE Smackdown is moving to the USA Network. There’s a small chance that it could gain more clout with it being on the same network as Raw. According to Ringside News, a new night for Smackdown isn’t realistic anymore.
“In addition to staying on Thursday nights, the show will also continue to are at it’s normal 8PM ET time slot. An official start date for Smackdown on USA has not been announced.”
It’s a positive note that Smackdown will remain on the same night. That will only help its longevity. There are those that believe a move to a new night is “best for business.” Arguments can be made for both sides, but it looks like that is also a pipe dream. There is one thing that can help Smackdown get out of the gutter.
WWE fans from all over won’t watch it because it isn’t live. Even if the content was spectacular, there would be those who would stick with the spoilers. Spoilers ruin pro wrestling. WWE Smackdown is a great example as to why. Sure, it’s content could improve. WWE NXT is taped every week, but the fans still come in bunches to watch it.
That’s because there is an emphasis on that show. It’s quite obvious that the WWE doesn’t care about Smackdown like they do Raw and NXT. It shouldn’t take a journalist to figure out why that’s a detriment to the overall production of WWE TV. At the end of the day, WWE Smackdown is in real trouble.
Nobody is eagerly waiting for it to come on Thursday nights. If they do, it’s recorded for the next time that consumer is free. Since the Nielsen system doesn’t include taped shows, Smackdown is at a huge disadvantage. The WWE is in need of changes across the board, but that’s an argument for another day.
Jim Ross, legendary-WWE announcer, shares that sentiment, as WWE Smackdown isn’t the only thing that needs fixed.
“I’d leave NXT on the WWE Network for sure and simply retool Smackdown as both it and RAW could use some overhauls on presentation and creative.”
[Image via wwe.com]