WWE Signs $1.4 Billion Broadcasting Contract for SmackDown
In an explosive turn of events, World Wrestling Entertainment (WWE) has just unleashed some earth-shattering news for its legions of fans. The famous ‘Friday Night SmackDown’ program returns triumphantly to the USA Network, exciting the wrestling world.
This colossal five-year deal, inked with NBCUniversal, is worth an average of $287 million annually. That’s right, folks, WWE’s thrilling sports entertainment brand is back in the ring, and the stakes have never been higher.
Breaking Down the Contract
Prepare to be amazed as we delve into the financial juggernaut that is WWE’s new deal with NBCUniversal. This monster contract has an eye-popping total value of over $1.4 billion, leaving wrestling enthusiasts in awe.
Under the terms of this spectacular partnership, WWE will also serve up four spine-tingling primetime specials per year, set to air on the NBC network. The action begins in the 2024/25 season, and fans can hardly wait for the fireworks.
A Trip Down Memory Lane
Let’s rewind the clock a bit to revisit history. USA Network, a longtime home for WWE, previously aired ‘SmackDown’ from 2016 to 2019. The wrestling extravaganza, beloved by fans across the globe, had a brief hiatus from the network when Fox took over the rights.
Like a triumphant wrestler making a dramatic return to the ring, ‘SmackDown’ is back where it belongs, promising electrifying action every Friday night on USA Network. This sensational deal represents a 40 percent increase over WWE’s previous contract with Fox, valued at $205 million annually.
Frances Berwick’s Excitement
Frances Berwick, the dynamic chairman of NBCUniversal Entertainment, couldn’t contain her enthusiasm for the future of WWE on her network. She declared, “With Friday nights on USA, primetime specials on NBC, and the WWE hub on Peacock, we’ll continue to use the power of our portfolio to super-serve this passionate fanbase.”
Her words echo the sentiments of millions of WWE fans worldwide, who are eagerly awaiting the return of ‘SmackDown’ to the USA Network.
While the return of ‘SmackDown’ to the USA Network is a monumental event in the wrestling world, WWE still has one more card up its sleeve. The company must now set its sights on securing a new rights agreement for its flagship show, ‘Raw.’
This wrestling juggernaut has garnered interest from several broadcasters, adding an element of intrigue to the mix. Currently, ‘Raw’ is showcased on the USA Network, with the existing contract set to expire in September 2024. As fans hold their breath, anticipation runs high for the next move in this exhilarating wrestling saga.
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