NBCUniversal May Drop WWE Smackdown Live From Its TV Schedule

For the past few years now, NBCUniversal owned the rights to both WWE Raw and Smackdown Live. It was a match made in heaven with both shows airing every Monday and Tuesday night on the network's USA TV channel.

However in 2019 the current TV deal between the WWE and NBCUniversal is expiring and this could change the landscape for Smackdown Live.

It sounds like NBCUniversal is able to afford airing Raw only so Smackdown Live may have to find a new network to call home.

Sources tell The Hollywood Reporter that NBCUniversal declined to re-sign Smackdown Live meaning the show is being shopped around to various other TV network stations.

This is mainly because NBCUniversal wants to only keep Raw which will be three times more expensive than the current deal.

Reportedly, NBCUniversal paid $30 million for the rights to Smackdown Live in 2010, but the deal in 2019 would have been way more expensive.

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 main thing WWE needs to agree on is that Smackdown Live needs to air preferably on Tuesday nights in order for the show to stay being 'live'.

Rumors surfaced earlier this year that Fox Sports could be a good candidate to broadcast WWE shows in the near future.

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.

For now, it looks like a bidding war is happening for Smackdown Live and the highest bid will finally get the show from next year onward.

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