Fox Snags ‘SmackDown Live’ Starting in 2019 - Broadcasting & Cable
Five-year deal for WWE’s Friday program, while USA extends pact for ‘Monday Night Raw’

Fox has confirmed its acquisition of WWE’s SmackDown Live in a five-year agreement. The two-hour wrestling show will air on Fridays 52 weeks a year, debuting on Fox in October 2019.

“We are thrilled to welcome WWE to the Fox Sports family and bring SmackDown Live to broadcast television,” said Eric Shanks, president, COO and executive producer, Fox Sports. “We are huge fans and know that together Fox Sports will be the leader in live events for the foreseeable future.”

SmackDown Live currently airs on USA Network.

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“WWE and Fox are a perfect match,” said Vince McMahon, WWE chairman and CEO. “Moving SmackDown Live to broadcast TV and having the ability to leverage Fox’s extensive portfolio of world-class sporting events will expand the reach of our flagship programming.”

SmackDown Live is averaging 1.3 million viewers 18-49, and 3 million total viewers.

USA Network, meanwhile, inked a five-year extension for WWE’s Monday Night Raw. The live, weekly three-hour program starts in October. It airs 52 weeks per year.

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Monday Night Raw and USA Network have dominated Monday nights during a truly historic run,” said Chris McCumber, president, entertainment networks for NBCUniversal Cable Entertainment. “Our partnership with WWE is one of the strongest and most successful in the business, and together we’ll take Raw to even greater heights.”

Monday Night Raw has been on the air for 25 years and more than 1,300 episodes.

“We look forward to continuing our long-standing partnership with NBCUniversal and USA Network,” said McMahon. “Monday Night Raw has been synonymous with USA Network and we are excited about what the future holds for WWE’s flagship program.”

Monday Night Raw is currently averaging 1.7 million viewers 18-49, and 3.6 million total viewers on USA.

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