USA Network, the exclusive cable home to WWE’s marquee properties, announced that its weekly SMACKDOWN show will air live – for the first time ever – and move to Tuesdays every week beginning July 19 from 8-10 p.m. ET/PT.
With the SMACKDOWN move, USA Network will now offer five hours of live WWE programming a week, including the weekly three-hour live WWE MONDAY NIGHT RAW (airing Mondays from 8-11 p.m. ET/PT), with each show featuring a distinct cast, unique storylines and a dedicated writing team.
In 2016 to date, MONDAY NIGHT RAW is averaging 4.011MM total viewers, 1.873MM P25-54 and 1.846MM P18-49 L7. SMACKDOWN in its current time slot is averaging 2.674MM P2+, 1.136MM P25-54, and 1.058MM P18-49+ L7, making USA the No.1 cable entertainment network across the key demos on Monday and Thursday nights.
In 2015, the two programs combined reached more than 50MM viewers. Both shows will now air live 52 weeks a year.
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“The fan base for our WWE shows is one of the most passionate and engaged audiences in all of entertainment,” Chris McCumber, President, Entertainment Networks, NBCUniversal Cable Entertainment, said in a release. “There is a huge appetite among our viewers for live programming, and the ability to move SMACKDOWN to a live format brings a new level of excitement and helps truly eventize this every week.”
WWE Chairman & CEO Vince McMahon added: “WWE's flagship programs will both leverage the incredible depth of our talent roster, distinct storylines and the unpredictable nature of live TV. This move will undoubtedly build more excitement and deepen engagement with our fans around the world.”
With 874 original episodes, SMACKDOWN is the second longest-running weekly episodic program in U.S. television history, only behind MONDAY NIGHT RAW at 1,200 episodes.
WWE SmackDown in Miami
WWE SmackDown will return to the AmericanAirlines Arena, home of the three-time NBA champion Miami Heat, on Tuesday, June 28 in Miami. That show will be taped for Thursday, June 30 on USA Network.
Scheduled to appear are Roman Reigns, Seth Rollins, Dean Ambrose, Charlotte, Bray Wyatt & the Wyatt Family, The Big Show, Chris Jericho, Sasha Banks, A.J. Styles, Kevin Owens, Alberto del Rio, Sheamus, Becky Lynch, Dolph Ziggler, Rusev, The Dudley Boyz, Paige, The Miz, New Day, and more.
Bell time is 7 p.m.
WWE SmackDown is 8 p.m. Thursdays on the USA Network.
WWE WrestleMania in Orlando
WWE’s WrestleMania 33 is Sunday, April 2, 2017 at Camping World Stadium, formerly the Cutrus Bowl Stadium, in Orlando.
WWE, a publicly traded company (NYSE: WWE), is an integrated media organization and recognized leader in global entertainment. The company consists of a portfolio of businesses that create and deliver original content 52 weeks a year to a global audience. WWE is committed to family friendly entertainment on its television programming, pay-per-view, digital media and publishing platforms.
WWE programming reaches more than 650 million homes worldwide in 35 languages. WWE Network, the first-ever 24/7 over-the-top premium network that includes all 12 live pay-per-views, scheduled programming and a massive video-on-demand library, is currently available in more than 170 countries. The company is headquartered in Stamford, Conn., with offices in New York, Los Angeles, London, Mexico City, Mumbai, Shanghai, Singapore, Dubai, Munich and Tokyo.
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About USA Network
USA Network, the leader in cable entertainment, offers a powerful stable of dramatic, comedic and unscripted originals in more than 102 million U.S. homes. The network also features spectacular live television, a dynamic portfolio of acquired series and the best in blockbuster theatrical films and entertainment events.
A trailblazer in digital innovation and storytelling, USA is defining, driving and setting the industry standard for Social TV. USA is a program service of NBCUniversal Cable Entertainment, a division of NBCUniversal. USA’s award-winning website is located at
http://www.usanetwork.com. Watch USA Network anywhere: On Demand, online or across mobile and connected TVs.
Beginning July 19, immediately following SMACKDOWN, USA Network will premiere the new original drama SHOOTER, starring Ryan Phillippe (“Secrets and Lies”), at 10/9c. SHOOTER is based on the best-selling Bob Lee Swagger novel by Stephen Hunter, Point of Impact, and the 2007 Paramount film starring Mark Wahlberg.
The series follows the courageous journey of Swagger, a highly-decorated ex-marine sniper who is coaxed back into action after he learns about a plot to kill the President. Mark Wahlberg (“Boardwalk Empire,” “Entourage”) of Closest to the Hole Productions serves as executive producer along with Stephen Levinson (“Boardwalk Empire,” “Ballers”) of Leverage Entertainment; Lorenzo di Bonaventura (“Transformers,” “The Real O’Neals”) and John Hlavin (“The Shield”). The series is a co-production between Paramount Television and Universal Cable Productions.
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