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What Show did WWE have before RAW?

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Before the inception of WWE RAW, the World Wrestling Federation (WWF) captivated audiences with “Prime Time Wrestling.”

This show, which aired from 1985 to 1993, was a cornerstone in the evolution of professional wrestling television programming.

It set the stage for the more widely known WWE Raw, which would later become a flagship show in the wrestling world.

The Genesis of Prime Time Wrestling

Prime Time Wrestling debuted in 1985, offering a fresh format in the realm of professional wrestling broadcasts.

Unlike its predecessors and contemporaries, which typically featured pre-taped matches with post-production commentary, Prime Time Wrestling presented a mix of live and taped matches, interviews, and unique segments.

This blend offered viewers a more dynamic and engaging wrestling experience.

The Show Before WWE RAW: Hosts and Format

The show was initially hosted by Gorilla Monsoon and Jesse “The Body” Ventura, a duo that became immensely popular for their chemistry and entertaining commentary.

Their banter and insights into the matches added a new layer of entertainment, making Prime Time Wrestling a must-watch for wrestling fans.

Impact on Wrestling Television

Prime Time Wrestling’s format was revolutionary. It moved away from the traditional studio setting, instead opting for a more varied approach that included different venues and live audience interactions.

This shift not only enhanced the viewer’s experience but also laid the groundwork for future wrestling programs, including WWE Raw.

Transition to WWE RAW on Monday Nights

In 1993, the WWF decided to revamp its approach to wrestling television. This led to the transition from Prime Time Wrestling to Monday Night Raw.

Raw inherited the live broadcast element from Prime Time Wrestling but took it a step further by airing live most Monday nights, a move that was both risky and innovative at the time.

Legacy of Prime Time Wrestling

The legacy of Prime Time Wrestling is evident in the way professional wrestling is broadcast today. Its influence on WWE Raw is undeniable, from the live audience format to the blend of in-ring action and outside-the-ring segments.

Prime Time Wrestling was not just a show; it was a trailblazer that reshaped the landscape of wrestling entertainment.


  • What was Prime Time Wrestling? Prime Time Wrestling was a professional wrestling television program produced by the WWF from 1985 to 1993.
  • Who were the hosts of Prime Time Wrestling? The show was famously hosted by Gorilla Monsoon and Jesse “The Body” Ventura.
  • How did Prime Time Wrestling differ from other wrestling shows? It combined live and taped matches, interviews, and segments, moving away from the traditional studio-only format.
  • When did Prime Time Wrestling air? Prime Time Wrestling aired from 1985 until its transition to Monday Night Raw in 1993.
  • What was the impact of Prime Time Wrestling on professional wrestling? The show was instrumental in evolving the format of wrestling broadcasts, influencing future shows like WWE Raw with its mix of live action, varied venues, and audience engagement.
  • How did Prime Time Wrestling lead to WWE Raw? WWE Raw succeeded Prime Time Wrestling in 1993, inheriting and expanding upon its live broadcast format and dynamic approach to wrestling entertainment.
Jake Skudder
Written by
Jake Skudder
Jake is an SEO-minded Combat Sports, Gaming and Pro Wrestling writer and successful Editor in Chief. He has more than ten years of experience covering mixed martial arts, pro wrestling and gaming across a number of publications, starting at SEScoops in 2012 under the name Jake Jeremy.