AEW Collision was back this past Saturday night with a big main event twenty years in the making, CM Punk versus Samoa Joe. The two men previously competed in a pair of singles matches early in their careers for Ring of Honor, with Joe picking up the victory both times. Decades later, both threw hands in the middle of a pro wrestling ring once again, oddly enough with Joe’s ROH TV Championship looking on, which was not on the line as this was an Owen Hart Cup Tournament match. Unlike their previous encounters, Punk was able to pick up the victory over Joe courtesy of one of the most dangerous moves in all of pro wrestling, the roll-up pin!
It was a satisfying main event that came on the heels of some other great action, and it seems that pro wrestling fans were open to showing the program some love on Saturday night. Wrestlenomics reports that this past Saturday’s installment averaged 580,000 viewers, about a 28% increase in overall viewers from the week before. 279,000 of those viewers were in the coveted P18-49 category, ranking it number five among cable originals for the day.
This week’s Collision episode saw the viewership spike at three different points, with the first spike coming during the conclusion of the Powerhouse Hobbs versus Ricky Starks Owen Hart Cup Tournament match in the second quarter, pulling in 587,000 viewers. After a slight dip through the third and fourth quarters, it peaked again in the fifth, with 602,000 viewers for the Bullet Club Gold versus FTR match. The last peak came in the final quarter-hour for Punk versus Joe, garnering a show-high 625,000 viewers.
These are reportedly the kind of numbers that Warner Brothers Discovery is looking for in its new AEW product. Higher-ups within the media conglomerate are said to be more concerned with Collision remaining in the top five cable originals on Saturdays rather than hoping it hits some kind of consistent viewership number. If Punk and his Collision cohorts can keep their momentum going, it could help AEW secure a big new TV rights deal with WBD that could reportedly be worth up to or over one billion dollars.
The debut episode of AEW Collision drew an average of 816,000 viewers, with 430,000 of those in the P18-49 demographic, placing third for the day in cable originals. The follow-up episode drew an average of 595,000 viewers and ranked fifth for the day in cable originals, while last week’s episode hit a series low of 452,000 average viewers, ranking ninth.