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PRO WRESTLING: WWE SmackDown moving to Thursdays on Syfy in January

The force of a suplex off the top rope from Brock Lesnar and Big Show collapsed the ring in Orlando on WWE SmackDown. The weekly prime-time television show will move from Fridays to Thursdays, beginning Jan. 15 on Syfy.
The force of a suplex off the top rope from Brock Lesnar and Big Show collapsed the ring in Orlando on WWE SmackDown. The weekly prime-time television show will move from Fridays to Thursdays, beginning Jan. 15 on Syfy. Photo Courtesy WWE

The show that averages 3.1 million viewers on Friday nights and beats all Friday prime-time viewing on any cable network is moving to Thursday nights on Syfy beginning Jan. 15 at 8 p.m. EST.

With nearly 800 original episodes, SmackDown is the second longest-running weekly episodic program in U.S. television history, only behind WWE’s other flagship program, Monday Night Raw.

“Quite simply, more young men watch television on Thursday night than on Fridays,” said Michael Engleman, Executive Vice President, Marketing, Digital and Global Brand Strategy, Syfy. “Among Men 18-49, PUTS are 15 percent higher compared to Fridays, expanding the potential audience for SmackDown. Since the majority of broadcast programming skews female, we’re also using Thursday nights to counter program.”

Michelle Wilson, Chief Revenue and Marketing Officer, WWE, added: “WWE’s sizable and passionate fan base make SmackDown the No.1 entertainment show on Syfy and the most-watched, regularly-scheduled program among key demographics on the network. We look forward to bringing the WWE audience to Thursdaynights on Syfy.”

During the past 15 years, SmackDown has been broadcast from 170 different venues, in 148 cities and towns, in seven different countries including the United States, Canada, the United Kingdom, Iraq, Japan, Italy and Mexico. The name SmackDown originated from WWE superstar Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson’s popular catchphrase, “Lay the Smackdown.”

SmackDown debuted on UPN on Aug. 26, 1999 as a Thursday night program to combat WCW Thunder. SmackDown moved to Fridays on Sept. 9, 2005.

About WWE

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 is broadcast in more than 150 countries and 30 languages and reaches more than 650 million homes worldwide. The company is headquartered in Stamford, Conn., with offices in New York, Los Angeles, London, Mexico City, Mumbai, Shanghai, Singapore, Munich, Dubai and Tokyo.

Additional information on WWE (NYSE: WWE) can be found at

wwe.com and corporate.wwe.com.

For information on its global activities, go to

http://www.wwe.com/worldwide/.

About Syfy

Syfy is a media destination for imagination-based entertainment. With year round acclaimed original series, events, blockbuster movies, classic science fiction and fantasy programming, a dynamic Web site (www.Syfy.com), and a portfolio of adjacent business (Syfy Ventures), Syfy is a passport to limitless possibilities.

Originally launched in 1992 as SCI FI Channel, and currently in 96 million homes, Syfy is a network of NBCUniversal, one of the world's leading media and entertainment companies. NBCUniversal is a subsidiary of Comcast Corporation.

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