Well if Vince McMahon wasn’t paying attention before, I’m sure he is now. New wrestling promotion, All Elite Wrestling has signed a big time tv deal with TNT.
It was announced Wednesday that the nascent promotion has signed a deal with WarnerMedia that will see AEW air a weekly wrestling show on TNTprimetime beginning later this year. This marks the first time professional wrestling has aired on TNT since the days of WCW, which was bought out by WWE in 2001 after the so-called Monday Night Wars that saw the two companies go head-to-head in the ratings.
AEW has become a new landing spot for both disgruntled TNA and WWE wrestlers who feel like their current brands have become stale.
Per New York Post:
WarnerMedia and AEW’s deal will only add to the increasing visibility of wrestling on television and streaming platforms. It comes at a time when WWE is moving its Tuesday “SmackDown Live” show to Fridays on Fox starting Oct. 4 while keeping “Monday Night Raw” on USA as part of television deals worth a combined $2.35 billion over the next five years.
A WWE show — for which the format and name are still to be determined — will also run on FS1 on Tuesday nights. It’s been rumored that AEW’s television show will also air on Tuesdays.
Since the company was launched, AEW officials have talked about providing a sport-based product and being an alternative to WWE. In the press release announcing the deal with WarnerMedia, AEW is described as providing “less scripted, soapy drama, and more athleticism and real sports analytics.”
AEW will also introduce statistics to wrestling as a way to deepen fan engagement by tracking each competitor’s wins and losses as the wrestlers pursue championships, analyzing their moves, assessing damage to their opponents, and providing insights into their winning streaks.
AEW already has its broadcast team in place, anchored by legendary wrestling announcer Jim Ross. He will be joined by Excalibur and Alex Marvez. Alicia Atout will handle backstage interviews and Justin Roberts is their ring announcer. The team will debut at “Double or Nothing.”