WWE SmackDown Ratings Up with Roman Reigns, Daniel Bryan, Cesaro, More

Mike Chiari@mikechiariFeatured ColumnistApril 24, 2021

Photo credit: WWE.com

Friday night's episode of WWE SmackDown on Fox, featuring interactions between Roman Reigns, Daniel Bryan and Cesaro, saw its ratings improve compared to last week.

According to Showbuzz Daily, SmackDown averaged 2.042 million viewers during its two-hour broadcast, which was up from last week's overnight average of 1.997 million. Friday's SmackDown also did a 0.5 rating in the 18-49-year-old demographic, which was tied for second on the night.

The main event segment saw Reigns bypass Cesaro and instead challenge Daniel Bryan to a Universal Championship match on next week's SmackDown, with the caveat that Bryan must leave SmackDown if he loses. Bryan accepted the challenge.

SmackDown opened with Cesaro cutting a promo only to be interrupted by Seth Rollins. That led to Jey Uso coming out as well, followed by Bryan to even the odds.

Bryan and Cesaro then beat Rollins and Uso in a tag team match, after which Bryan got on the mic and taunted Reigns. Cesaro swung Uso repeatedly in hopes that Reigns would try to save him, but The Tribal Chief never emerged.

Bryan called for Reigns to grant Cesaro a title match, and Paul Heyman later said Reigns would give his answer by the end of the night.

Reigns did that, but it wasn't the answer most expected. Reigns focused on Bryan, saying that he doesn't like Bryan and would give him one more shot at the Universal Championship next week on the condition that he must leave SmackDown if he loses.

Cesaro gave Bryan his blessing, and Bryan accepted the match, meaning there will be a huge main event on next week's SmackDown.

Friday's SmackDown also featured an Intercontinental Championship match, with Apollo Crews defending against Kevin Owens. Crews won thanks to interference from Commander Azeez, and Sami Zayn danced around KO's prone body after the match.

Crews bragged about the win in a backstage interview, only to get attacked by Big E, setting up a WrestleMania rematch for the IC title next week.

Also on SmackDown, a WrestleMania Backlash match for the SmackDown Women's Championship between Bianca Belair and Bayley was announced, an Aleister Black vignette aired, Tamina defeated Nia Jax, and Rey and Dominik Mysterio beat Chad Gable and Otis.

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