Triple H has made various changes to the WWE product since taking over as head of creative from Vince McMahon.
Raw’s television ratings on the USA Network have been up since Triple H took over. The first Raw that Triple H was fully in charge of did 2.2 million viewers, which was the most in over two years.
Fightful Select spoke with several USA Network and Universal sources about the changes. One longtime employee stated that this was more in line with the company’s expected numbers when they extended WWE Raw’s deal before the COVID-19 pandemic.
This source reiterated that they had never really imagined where Raw was under 2 million viewers outside of holidays. The source said, “the following weeks were the real test, but the results from the first Monday had me personally very excited.”
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The source noted, at one point, that they also didn’t expect Raw to be back over 2 million viewers regularly, which did happen in August. A Universal source stated they didn’t personally expect the changes to be so drastic, but that the buzz created around the show can’t be argued with, and they thought SmackDown’s ratings on FOX would increase as well.
The media outlet asked USA Network sources about the direction of Raw. One source said they’ve personally seen the show as more appointment viewing, and it felt more natural. There’s “more discussion about the show within the company than there has been since their new rights deal started.”
A longtime USA Network employee said the relationship between WWE and the network has long been an easy-going, business-as-usual. Many in the company were happy to see creative changes implemented by Triple H. This same person noted they would be surprised if USA didn’t make a play to renew WWE programming next year when negotiations are likely to start as they believe WWE has put themselves in a better position than they had been the month prior.