A new report has shed some light on what kind of television ratings would make Warner Bros. Discovery with regard to AEW Collision on Saturday nights.
The debate television ratings in pro wrestling is an ongoing saga featuring people that think the ratings matter a whole lot while others believe the Nielsen rating system is a thing of the past and shouldn’t matter since so many are cutting cable in their homes.
For a television company like Warner Brothers Discovery (WBD) that owns cable channels that air AEW Dynamite (on TBS), Rampage and Collision (both on TNT), television ratings do matter. That’s because you sell advertising for commercials based on what your ratings are. There are five hours of AEW programming on WBD networks on three different nights of the week, so WBD needs to care.
When it comes to booking a pro wrestling show, the ratings matter because if a segment goes up or down then that tells you what works and what didn’t work. If a wrestler keeps drawing consistently high numbers then they are going to be featured more in opening segments, at the top of the hour, or in the main event slot.
Collision airs on TNT on Saturday nights, which is considered by many to be the worst night of TV because a lot of people go out on the weekends. The debut episode of Collision did 816,000 viewers, the second week did about 200,000 viewers less and the third episode on July 1st did 452,000 viewers and a 0.13 rating in the 18-49 year old demographic. The numbers aren’t great, but it’s still early in Collision’s run.
It has been reported by Fightful Select that while AEW didn’t respond to a request asking what would be a successful rating for Collision, the folks at WBD did respond. WBD informed Fightful that they cared more about where Collision ranked against the competition for the night. Dynamite has ranked at the top or near the top on Wednesdays in the key demo, so WBD sources are expecting the same for Collision.
The report from Fightful also noted that WBD is very aware of the fact that the fall months will face difficult competition due to US college football games airing in primetime. Those games should do very well and they will hurt Collision’s viewership. Fightful maintains that the WBD sources largely considered a top 5 ranking as a success.
How successful Collision is for WBD will determine if AEW lands a new media rights deal, which could be huge in terms of the financial growth of All Elite Wrestling.
In the main event of AEW Collision on July 8th, CM Punk beat Samoa Joe in the Owen Hart Cup semifinals. Punk will face Ricky Starks in the finals next week since Starks beat Powerhouse Hobbs earlier in the show.