WWE/THE CW: WWE and The CW Network back in business after 15 years

Posted on 11/09/123 by Colin Vassallo

NXT isn’t the first WWE show to be airing on The CW Network
when it debuts there in October 2024 and WWE’s history with
the network dates back to the start of Smackdown.

When Smackdown started airing in the United States on April
29, 1999, the show’s home was UPN and UPN later merged with
The WB to become The CW. Officially, Smackdown moved to
Friday nights on The CW in September 2005 and it remained on
the network until October 2008 where it then moved to

PWInsider.com, which broke the story about NXT making the
move to The CW Network, said that the deal is in the range
of up to $37 million per year, an increase from the $15
million a year that NBCUniversal were paying for the show on
USA Network. The numbers however do not align with what TKO
said on Tuesday during the conference call where TKO and
Endeavor CEO Ari Emanuel said that they are getting a 70%
increase in television rights from The CW Network for NXT
over their previous deal.

Brad Schwartz, Entertainment President at The CW Network,
posted on his LinkedIn that he’s “not sure who is more
psyched…teenage me or current me,” after news broke that NXT
is moving. He also posted a link to a Deadline.com story
adding, “Big news for wrestling fans!!!”

Schwartz was the Pop Media Group President when TNA
Wrestling aired on POP TV and was instrumental in bringing
the brand to that station. He became Entertainment President
of The CW in November 2022.

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