Warner Bros. Discovery May Have Interest In WWE Programming

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An expert in the world of television rights has claimed that Warner Bros. Discovery, the home of AEW TV, may be interested in carrying WWE programming.

Ever since AEW launched their Wednesday night Dynamite TV show in October 2019, they have been on TNT and later TBS. The company that owns those channels is called Warner Brothers Discovery (WBD for short) and since taking over, they have made a lot of changes, including budget cuts.

As for WWE, they were recently acquired by Endeavor, which is teaming up WWE with UFC to become an entertainment powerhouse with a strong television presence, streaming options, mass live gates and of course pay-per-view events as well.

One of the big stories for WWE moving forward is where their main TV shows Raw and Smackdown will air. That’s because the five-year billion-dollar deals for Raw on USA Network (owned by Comcast/NBC Universal) and Smackdown on Fox are set to expire in October 2024. Negotiations for new deals are set to begin soon if they haven’t started already. In many cases, major TV renewals are announced about 18 months before a deal expires, so we are at that point now.

James Andrew Miller is a veteran journalist that specializes in covering the media with major books written about things like ESPN, CAA, Saturday Night Live and he has an upcoming book about HBO as well. Miller also was an Executive VP of Original Programming for USA Network, which is where WWE Raw and NXT currently air. Miller appeared on the SI Media podcast with Jimmy Traina recently to talk about what he has heard about WWE’s TV programming future. Miller attended WrestleMania, which led to talking about WBD having interest in WWE.

“I wouldn’t be surprised, despite the fact that money is such an issue for them, I wouldn’t be surprised if Warner Brothers Discovery wouldn’t like a slice of that WWE pie. It doesn’t have to be on Monday night. Monday night is a tough night. If you go through the calendar, all year round, there are sports on Monday night.”

“If you’re Warner Brothers Discovery, you could say, ‘we’re going to move it to a different night. We have Thursday night with the NBA, but we’re going to figure out a different night for it,’ and all of a sudden it becomes very attractive.”

After Miller was told about how WBD has multiple nights of AEW programming right now, Miller was adamant that WBD has people interested in WWE.

“I know there are people at Warner Brothers who are interested (in the WWE). If they were to lose the NBA, I would certainly imagine they would become a pretty big advocate for buying something. That would create quite the auction. Unless it’s taken off. If either Fox or NBC comes in with a pre-emptive offer that WWE likes, they [WBD] won’t even get a chance.”

While the thought of Monday Night Raw being moved to a different night seems like a far-fetched idea after 30+ years, Miller addressed the possibility of WWE CEO Nick Khan entertaining the idea of moving Raw to a night other than Monday.

“I have not heard Nick advocate that. My point is, if a buyer comes in and doesn’t want Monday night, that Monday package is mobile. There is no reason why it has to be Monday night.”

If WBD has interested in WWE, it would be interesting to see how that could affect the AEW shows that already air on WBD channels as well as the possible addition of AEW Collision on Saturday nights this summer.

As always in a case like this, consider it just a rumor. Just like with the WWE sale recently there were a lot of rumors and some people didn’t think Endeavor was going to acquire WWE, but that’s what happened.

H/T Fightful