But why? Looking back at the draft you would have to say that RAW got the better end of the deal. While SmackDown did get then WWE Champion Dean Ambrose and "the face that runs the place" John Cena, RAW named Seth Rollins as the number one draft pick as well as acquiring Brock Lesnar, Roman Reigns, Kevin Owens and the longest reigning NXT Champion Finn Balor. The women went the same way. RAW got Women's Champion Charlotte and Sasha Banks, while SmackDown got Becky Lynch. Overall you'd have to say that RAW has the better roster. So why do many people feel like there is such as big gulf in quality?
Well the obvious answer would be the three hours. Being an English wrestling fan I find it difficult to stay awake and focused for the entire 3 hours and while many people say "Why don't you just record and watch it the day after?" It just doesn't feel the same. SmackDown Live on the other hand is only two hours, so by the time you reach the main event for SmackDown we're only half way through RAW. The time difference clearly is a big factor, but it isn't the only one.
SmackDown on the other hand is a different story. While Daniel Bryan and Shane McMahon may have been heavily involved in the show in the opening weeks when it was finding it's feet, the most recent episode of SmackDown didn't feature any involvement from either of them. It really feels like the focus of SmackDown is about the talent and not the people in charge.
Speaking of talent, SmackDown is clearly doing a better job utilising their roster than RAW is. Two examples come to mind here, the women and the tag teams. While RAW has the better star power in their Women's division, (although that's arguable with the return of Nikki Bella) SmackDown does a better job integrating all of their Women onto the show. Becky Lynch and Alexa Bliss are involved in a rivalry over the title while Nikki Bella and Carmella have a problem with each other and clearly Naomi and Natalya don't see eye to eye. My point is that every woman feels like they have something to do. On the other hand, the women on RAW feel like they're been used just so they can say they've been used. Charlotte vs Sasha has been a watchable feud but it's been going on for a long time now. Outside of Bayley, nobody else feels like they even should be near the title.
Now take a look at SmackDown. American Alpha were clearly the big name from NXT that WWE wanted to throw their money behind but everyone has chipped in. The Usos have drastically improved since turning heel and quite possibly the best work by WWE has been how they've used Heath Slater and Rhyno, which is now one of the most entertaining things in WWE.
Everything SmackDown does just feels on another level to RAW. This is not me saying you should no longer watch RAW. The wrestling in WWE as a whole is excellent and should be supported. What I am saying is that if you feel over saturated by WWE then the likelihood is that you're going to choose one show over the other and if you had to pick one show right now, which one would you go for? I know it would be an easy choice for me.