For the first time in nearly nine years, WWE’s Monday Night Raw went head to head with opposing wrestling programming. TNA, who’s normal timeslot runs on Thursday night from 9 to 11, has made the jump to Monday nights in hopes of going head to head with Monday Night Raw much like WCW Nitro did for the first time back on September 4th, 1995. This rivalry lead to some of the greatest programming in wrestling history in the eyes of its fans.
TNA Impact’s first weekly Monday night episode drew a 0.98 cable rating and drew 1.4 million viewers. This rating was down 12% and it’s viewership down 6.1% compared to the preview week’s Thursday edition of Impact. Surprisingly headlined by some of the very same performers from Nitro like Sting, Hulk Hogan and Ric Flair, it is likely that TNA and Spike TV officials were not thrilled with only a 1.0 rating.
On the other hand, WWE’s Monday Night Raw counted in a 3.4 cable rating and 5.1 million viewers based on the overnight reporting. Raw saw a 7.4% drop in ratings and a 4.2% drop in viewership showing that TNA’s move may have affected Vince McMahon and USA Network’s Monday night programming staple.
Spike TV has stated they expect Impact ratings to go up when the DVR viewing reporting comes in as they believe a ” significant portion” of their audience will be watching Impact over DVR. Unlike the Monday Night Wars of the late nineties in which people were forced to either watch one program over the other or switch constantly between channels, this version looks to be more of a long term battle due things like DVR and improved internet viewing options for both programs.