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Strong Indication That WWE Might Move RAW From Monday Nights

Posted By: Ben Jordan Kerin on Oct 12, 2023

Strong Indication That WWE Might Move RAW From Monday Nights

WWE has been hashing out details concerning their media rights for a while now, particularly regarding SmackDown's place on FOX. However, WWE has now confirmed via a press release that SmackDown will transition back to the USA Network.

According to the release, TKO Group and NBC Universal have settled on a new five-year agreement to bring SmackDown back to the USA Network starting in October 2024. Additionally, WWE will also produce four annual specials for NBC's primetime slot. Company executive Nick Khan confirmed that despite the channel shift, SmackDown will continue to broadcast on Friday evenings.

The future of Raw and NXT, which currently broadcast on the USA Network on Mondays and Tuesdays respectively, is less certain. Their media rights are expected to expire in September 2024. According to The Hollywood Reporter, SmackDown's move to the network signals a probable departure for Raw and NXT:

"The new deal will bring WWE to NBC primetime and SmackDown to USA on Friday nights, it will also mean the end of Raw and NXT on USA.

"A source familiar with the Raw discussions tell The Hollywood Reporter that the market for the program is 'extremely active,' with traditional linear networks, streaming services, and 'unexpected players' all showing interest."

Endeavor and TKO Group CEO Ari Emanuel spoke at the Bloomberg Screentime Conference, shedding light on the situation:

"We got a 40 percent increase for SmackDown. We have Raw which is the number one package available. There’s three rights coming available to market. Three big rights: WWE Raw, UFC, NBA. We are involved in two of them.

"There’s six buyers, plus I would say WWE Network which is up in '26. I think I’m saying that — maybe '25, '26. So, you cannot undervalue the WWE and UFC for the following reasons: One, we do not have a season. One of the biggest issues that will happen with s-mods and networks is churn. We’re 52 weeks a year, right? And we’re flexible.

"You want us Thursday night? You want us Tuesday night? I don’t have any of those scheduling issues and that churn issue because we’re the full year.

"It’s so much different than any other sport because then people churn out. That’s one of the issues with sports. Not in a bad way… and then the package is over and then you leave. We do not have that. Our fans are loyal, they stick around and they move.”

Source: postwrestling.com
Tags: #wwe #tko #raw #ari emanuel

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