Smackdown Reportedly Being Shopped as NBCUniversal Focuses On Keeping Raw


WWE has talked with the USA Network, FOX, Disney, CBS, Amazon, and YouTube. The publication cites sources and claims NBCU is focused on renewing its pact for Raw, which is expected to go for as much as three times its current value.

Sporting News' Michael McCarthy reported in March that Fox was looking to acquire the rights for Raw and SmackDown Live, with Raw potentially airing on network television and SmackDown Live going to FS1.

Hollywood Reporter Editorial Director Matthew Belloni posted information Wednesday indicating that Smackdown Live could be done on the USA Network, while Raw is sticking around at triple the price they're now making.

It's not clear yet when WWE expects to strike a deal for Smackdown Live and it's not clear if this new deal with NBCUniversal would keep Raw at 3 hours or back to 2 hours. If it's true that WWE can get an increase from NBC for Raw and add a new deal to SmackDown from a new network on top of that, it could make Vince McMahon a much richer man. NBCU had paid $30 million for the SmackDown franchise in 2010.

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This won't be the first time both Raw and Smackdown will be on different TV channels as the shows were separated in the early '00s.

The Fox connection has been in the conversation for months now with there even being rumor and innuendo that Fox could try to buy WWE outright.

WWE's television contract is expiring in 2019 with the USA Network.