The Blue team are heading back to Friday nights as WWE have finally announced their upcoming television deals.
Earlier today, WWE have announced that starting October 4th 2019, SmackDown Live will be moving to FOX Sports. This means that WWE’s second brand will be moving back to Friday nights for the first time since 2005 when ‘Friday Night SmackDown’ made it’s move on UPN, before moving to The CW network.
Eric Shanks, President, COO and Executive Producer FOX Sports spoke on the deal, saying;
“At FOX we are thrilled to welcome WWE to the FOX Sports family and bring SmackDown Live to broadcast television. We are huge fans and know that together FOX Sports will be the leader in live events for the foreseeable future.”
WWE Chairman & CEO Vince McMahon also spoke on the deal, stating;
“WWE and FOX are a perfect match, moving SmackDown Live to broadcast TV and having the ability to leverage FOX’s extensive portfolio of world-class sporting events will expand the reach of our flagship programming.”
SmackDown’s move to FOX will be the shows sixth different channel since it’s debut in 1999. It started on UPN, before moving to The CW and then MyNetwork TV in 2008. They then moved to Syfy in 2010 before landing on it’s current deal on USA Network in 2016.
WWE have also announced a new five year deal with USA Network to continue broadcasting their flagship show ‘WWE Raw’ for a further five years, taking it into it’s thirtieth year of being on the air. These agreements increase the average annual value (AAV) of WWE’s U.S. distribution to 3.6 times that of the prior deal with NBCU.
WWE will host a conference call at 8:00 a.m. ET on June 27 to discuss the contents of this release.