Executives from FOX are quite optimistic about the network’s upcoming five-year agreement with WWE, which will begin on October 4, 2019 with the premiere of SmackDown, according to the Wrestling Observer Newsletter.
While there has been concern expressed online, word is FOX executives are expecting SmackDown to be a big hit and see a path for growth with the additional exposure they will have on football and baseball games this fall. FOX’s household penetration is also significantly higher than the USA Network as they’re available in 120 million homes, compared to the 98 million where USA is available.
Richard Reacts: Vince McMahon’s deal with FOX is one he’s dreamed of for years. Once signed, the company’s stock price jumped and while it’s cooled recently, WWE is as profitable as ever despite a decrease in overall viewership. WWE will hope their partnership with FOX will indeed help them to grow their product, while AEW will surely look to try and push their boundaries as legitimate competition. The first competition Vince has had since WCW folded in 2001.