WWE Raw Likely To Stay On USA Network

WWE 'Smackdown' Up for Grabs as NBCUniversal Moves to Pin Down 'Raw'

TV rights is a huge revenue earner for the WWE, so it's unlikely WWE just wants to put Smackdown on its own WWE Network.

Smackdown Live is not part of the deal and that show will go to open bidding, meaning that it will likely be picked up by another network.

WWE's television future took an interesting turn on Wednesday, as NBCUniversal reportedly declined to re-up its current deal for SmackDown Live in an attempt to keep Monday Night Raw.

Especially after the brand extension in 2016, it wouldn't hurt to create more separation between WWE's two biggest weekly programs.

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It sounds like NBCUniversal is able to afford airing Raw only so Smackdown Live may have to find a new network to call home. At the time, the company is said to have paid $30 million for rights to the franchise.

WWE and NBCU both declined comment on the negotiations, which are still underway. It marked the first time that the top three shows were broadcast on the same network.

And if it is Raw on U.S. and SmackDown on Fox broadcast television, the question then might become whether WWE decides to elevate SmackDown to being the unofficial "A" show. Presumably, that would mean that Raw would stay on the USA Network but it's possible that they could move to one of their other networks. WWE programming is an obvious fit for the "new Fox" focused on sports and live events and SmackDown could anchor Fox programming on Tuesday nights.

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