PWTorch editor Wade Keller presents a special Thursday Flagship edition of the Wade Keller Pro Wrestling Podcast featuring a WrestleMania 36 Preview with ex-WWE Creative Team member and professional stand-up comedian Matt McCarthy.

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WWE has made it clear in their quarterly financial reports why Raw will remain three hours on Monday nights despite Creative and TV Ratings struggles.

It’s also clear that USA Network is benefiting from three-hour Raw episodes – despite the falling TV Ratings. USA is also benefiting from adding Smackdown to their Thursday night TV line-up – despite the show drawing lower ratings than on Syfy.

Ad sales information obtained by PWTorch indicates that USA receives close to $1.0 million in ad sales revenue for a three-hour Raw episode.

The post-WrestleMania Raw on April 4 generated about $940,000 in ad revenue, while this week’s Raw from April 11 was around $1.0 million in revenue.

Then, there’s two-hour Smackdown, which generated about $785,000 in ad sales revenue on March 31 leading into WrestleMania.

Both shows command about $12,000-13,000 for a 30-second ad spot.

Comparatively, the average unit cost for a 30-second spot on “Chrisley Knows Best” is $9,000-12,000 and $8,000-9,000 for “Motive.”

WWE draws higher TV ratings on a weekly basis, which would typically allow USA to command higher rates than other programming. But, it’s pro wrestling, so the market takes on different form when there is less demand for ad slots.

It’s a big reason why WWE and NBCU started a new industry marketing campaign last year trying to reach blue-chip brands, like Coca-Cola, by presenting WWE in a different light to mainstream advertisers.

Right now, Raw is commanding about one million dollars for a three-hour episode and Smackdown is getting about three-quarters of a million dollars for a two-hour episode. It will be interesting to see if this grows over time if more big-name companies come on-board, or if the revenue dips, following the pattern of both shows’s declining TV Ratings.

Regardless, USA Network is getting a nice chunk of change to air Raw and Smackdown despite not being able to command the type of high ad dollars of lower-rated TV shows.