WWE SmackDown Smashes Long-Standing Record

the rock wwe promo sd

Good news for WWE SmackDown heading into WrestleMania.

Not for the first time, the February 16th episode of Friday Night SmackDown was dominated by The Bloodline. During the biggest segment on the show, The Rock returned to the blue brand and officially joined the group that has dominated WWE for well over two years.

Following his appearance at the WrestleMania Kick-Off event, Rock leaned into his latest heel turn by taking shots at Cody Rhodes and endorsing Roman Reigns. However, The Rock also hinted that all might not be quite what it seems heading into WrestleMania.

The show also featured Elimination Chamber qualifying matches with the likes of Naomi, Tiffany Stratton, and Kevin Owens all in action.

Writing in the Wrestling Observer Newsletter, Dave Meltzer noted that the episode actually broke a long-standing record by topping the network ratings — the first time a wrestling show has ever achieved the feat.

“For the first time in the history of television ratings, which date back to the late 1940s, a pro wrestling television show finished first for the week in network ratings.

Smackdown on 2/16, featuring the first advertised appearance of The Rock on a WWE television show in years, did 2,555,000 viewers and an 0.75 in 18-49.

The total viewer numbers were actually only sixth place for the night and nowhere near the top. But the 18-49 number topped the Thurday night premiere episode of the season of Ghosts (0.67) and Young Sheldon (0.63) on CBS for the top spot of the week.”

The Rock To Miss WWE Elimination Chamber

Despite being in line for a huge match at WrestleMania, The Rock will miss Elimination Chamber. In a somewhat bizarre rant at Cody Rhodes and Seth Rollins, the Great One confirmed he wouldn’t be heading to Australia.

At the event, both Rollins and Rhodes will appear on The Grayson Waller Effect.