After undergoing significant transformations, including a merger with UFC under the TKO Group, WWE is poised for further evolution.
TKO Group and NBC Universal have recently announced a new five-year contract that will bring SmackDown back to the USA Network starting in October 2024. Alongside this move, WWE will also create four annual specials for NBC primetime.
Dave Meltzer discussed the potential changes on Wrestling Observer Radio, noting that WWE's new schedule could affect not just their own shows but also the landscape for other wrestling promotions such as AEW:
"From a WWE standpoint, as far as trying to save money and make life easier on the executives, [Paul] Levesque and all the people that are overseeing everything. It makes the most sense to have the shows on 2 consecutive nights. Whether that’s Monday Tuesday, Tuesday Wednesday, Thursday Friday, or whatever. It saves money, you are not flying everybody out, flying the production crew out to set up on a Monday and then come back on a Friday."
Meltzer also touched on the potential scheduling conflicts with other wrestling promotions, mainly AEW:
“I think it will be interesting, then what happens to everyone else. If they [WWE] go on Wednesday does AEW stay on Wednesday or do they try and move to an open day? AEW, when they were on TNT they were limited in the sense that they can’t run Tuesday. Tony Khan wanted Tuesday and it would coincide with SmackDown moving to Friday. The problem was that TNT had the NBA on Tuesday, so there was no chance of doing that. Now they are on TBS, there are different schedule things. There are different days of the week open."
Meltzer concluded by emphasizing the fluid nature of the situation, stating, "I guess it’s a wait-and-see thing.”
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