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Fox reaches agreement to air WWE's 'SmackDown Live' (Update: 5 Years, 1 Billion Dollars)

Oct 25, 2017
1,040
The UFC just got a multi-year deal with ESPN to air 15 cards that will feature no one you have ever heard of for $150 million a year.
They are going to do just fine
They are, but the reversal is still startling. FOX is going to WWE after trying the UFC. They are giving them a billion dollars for 5 years. Not many would have predicted this change.
 
Oct 25, 2017
5,124
Guess we all better get used to the Big Dog Era.

Now, does Smackdown become Raw 2.0, or will it continue feeling somewhat different/better paced than Raw? I tend to prefer Smackdown, especially with their tag division and stars like AJ, Bryan, and Nakamura feeling like top tier talents. I hope that they dont kill the roster split for this
 

BronsonLee

Don't worry I'm on the case
Moderator
Oct 24, 2017
10,501
They are, but the reversal is still startling. FOX is going to WWE after trying the UFC. They are giving them a billion dollars for 5 years. Not many would have predicted this change.
WWE gets more numbers consistently, though the ceiling for UFC is higher. They just didn't hit it enough
 

Serene

Community Resettler
Member
Oct 25, 2017
24,547
Guess we all better get used to the Big Dog Era.

Now, does Smackdown become Raw 2.0, or will it continue feeling somewhat different/better paced than Raw?
With these numbers, the brand split has to stay in place so each side can see unique value and individual starpower. And I think the numbers for Raw and SD being pretty similar overall means they’ll treat both shows with similar importance.

As for content changes? Who knows. We know USA over the years has influenced Raw, so maybe Fox will influence SD.

Plus SD will always be two hours now.
 
Oct 27, 2017
2,234
#5YEARS
#ONEBILLION

LOL.

Holy fuck what an overpay.

Smackdown is the B show and it's a Billion dollar show.

What a world.
 
Oct 27, 2017
7,597
So, a billion dollars for a shitty scripted reality TV show.

What kind of ratings does WWE do? I feel like I don't know a single person in real life who watches it.
 

BronsonLee

Don't worry I'm on the case
Moderator
Oct 24, 2017
10,501
So, a billion dollars for a shitty scripted reality TV show.

What kind of ratings does WWE do? I feel like I don't know a single person in real life who watches it.
Depends, but like 3-3.5 mil for Smackdown every week. RAW does a bit more because it's the flagship. Smackdown is the B show

Good shit, Paige.
Her house is now a billion dollar house
 

Serene

Community Resettler
Member
Oct 25, 2017
24,547
So, a billion dollars for a shitty scripted reality TV show.

What kind of ratings does WWE do? I feel like I don't know a single person in real life who watches it.
It’s pretty much either the first or second rated program on cable for Raw most Monday’s. Smackdown is usually third or fourth for Tuesday’s.

Raw usually does 2.8-3 million viewers per week

Smackdown usually does 2.3-2.7 million per week

Going to Fox should bring that Smackdown number up though, especially if it remains live
 

Slayven

You probably post about me on another board.
Moderator
Oct 25, 2017
25,926
Was a little bummed about Friday night and it not being live anymore (most likely?) but I have a baby on the way in a fw months and definitely not going out on Fridays anymore... so who knows... might actually start watching WWE weekly TV again.



I'm not in the comic world, but from an outsider it would seem like the comic world is in much better shape today than it was 20 years ago. When I was a kid/teen, being into super heroes and comics was something that was very niche and part of 'nerd culture' (which wasn't nearly as acceptable as it is today)... and... Today, comic book super hero movies are the highest grossing movies every weekend, with still packed theatres week after week.

Similarly, WWE TV is pretty shitty, but my 7-year-old nephew who doesn't even watch wrestling and they don't have cable, knows who John Cena is and knows his slogan and does his taunt. Likewise, when I was a kid, WWF was struggling to fill up the Hartford Civic Center for Wrestlemania 11, meanwhile today, they're selling out the Louisiana Super Dome.... and the last 5 Wrestlemanias have all been in the top 10 of overall Wrestlemania attendance... outselling Hogan v. Ultimate Warrior or Stone Cold v. The Rock. Likewise, like pro wrestling -- from really niche to really mainstream -- gets covered in mainstream publications like The Ringer, Bleacher Report, Yahoo Sports, ESPN, and more... Like, Bill SImmons will have a half hour on his show talking about wrestling after PPVs, something that would have never happened 20 years ago even during the height of the Attitude Era or NWO era. Like that's a time when pro wrestling was as hot as ever... yet... ESPN might show a clip or two from Wrestlemania the day after, but sort of snarky and joking, making fun of the people, where as now CBSSports will have a rundown of the Backlash card with match grades and potential story line changes the night of the PPV.

It's definitely a weird phenomenon.

Wrestling industry in general is a weird one that's tough to pin down. Wrestling fans are weird ones that are tough to pin down. Trends in wrestling and wrestling fans don't often match stereotypes and expectations.
Don't confuse comicbook movies with comics. 20 years ago the top 5 books were doing 500k-million a piece books sold a month. Nowadays you are lucky if the top 5 are doing 500k combined. Sales have gotten better, but no where near what they use to be
 
Oct 28, 2017
679
Isn't friday one of the worst days to put shows on? I remember a bunch of shows being moved to fridays and then cancelled. Wonder if smackdown will get better ratings than smackdown on upn.
Fridays were known as the death slot for TV shows, especially on Fox, in the early 2000s IIRC. I don't know if it holds up today.
 
Oct 25, 2017
18,405
Isn't friday one of the worst days to put shows on? I remember a bunch of shows being moved to fridays and then cancelled. Wonder if smackdown will get better ratings than smackdown on upn.
On a mainstream broadcast network you will take fridays. I bet its live if they're paying a Billion for it.

And Pyro is totally back.
 
Oct 25, 2017
3,298
United States
Why would you pay 1 billion dollars and then promptly put the show in the Friday death slot?

Vince is probably happy WWE is going to be on regular broadcast TV, though.

#5YEARS
#ONEBILLION

LOL.

Holy fuck what an overpay.

Smackdown is the B show and it's a Billion dollar show.

What a world.
They actually loaded up Smackdown recently, obviously to help sell it.
 
Oct 25, 2017
1,091
I have a theory that everyone secretly likes wrestling...though I still want to crawl in a hole whenever I have people over to watch a PPV and they do things like that singing promo.
I was mad at first when I saw singing promo and I thought you were disrespecting Rusev Day...then I remembered the video where all the "superstars" sang.
 
Oct 30, 2017
1,057
Wow absolutely insane. Good on them.

Their product is trash but even the mediocre ratings on a consistent wekkly basis provides great ad revenue.
 

Serene

Community Resettler
Member
Oct 25, 2017
24,547
Why would you pay 1 billion dollars and then promptly put the show in the Friday death slot?

Vince is probably happy WWE is going to be on regular broadcast TV, though.



They actually loaded up Smackdown recently, obviously to help sell it.
Because the idea is that WWE (and Smackdown) has a dedicated audience that will do better on Friday’s than anything else Fox could put there and will be way more consistent in terms of keeping viewers

It basically makes Friday’s a non-issue for Fox going forward. Like they know they’ll easily get decent numbers from that slot every week now.
 
Oct 30, 2017
1,249
Big Dog to get special cross roster status to make Fox feel like they are getting their money's worth. Can't wait to see Smackdown become the house that the big dog built.
 
Oct 25, 2017
5,100
Meltzer said this last week
"If [SD Live] gets anywhere from $80-$160 million, they're on easy street. They don't need to sell house show tickets, merchandise, PPVs & network subscriptions anymore, because the TV money is going to carry them to extreme profitability, and that's why the stock is so high, because people kind of see that. There should be no or slight added TV costs, and instead of making $160m revenue in the US, they'd be making $300-$400m."

- Meltzer
Now they're getting $200 million a year for 5 years...

They're fucking set yall. Get ready for Roman's mega-long SDL title reign rofl. Get ready for the SHAKE UP OF ALL SHAKE UPS.

Shield Boyz Running Wild.
 
Oct 25, 2017
8,666
Isn't friday one of the worst days to put shows on? I remember a bunch of shows being moved to fridays and then cancelled. Wonder if smackdown will get better ratings than smackdown on upn.
Depends on the show,
CBS sent Hawaii 5-0 there to die after they barely renewed it after 3 seasons, 5 seasons later its doing incredibly well. 8-9 million viewers an episode still 8 seasons in on Friday nights.

Shark Tank was doing so well on Friday ABC promoted it to Sundays.