According to Dave Meltzer on a recent edition of The Wrestling Observer Radio Program, All Elite Wrestling is in no rush to sign a TV deal so it looks like we will be waiting a little longer than expected for a confirmed TV deal to be announced. Meltzer also noted that talks for a TV deal are “smooth” and nothing has fallen apart.
AEW believes that holding out will strategically benefit them, especially considering the new deal between UFC & ESPN, and the proven success of The DAZN Streaming Service. The hold up from AEW is reportedly coming from the examples of synchronization between sports promotions and streaming services, along with rights fees for sports continuing to rise. Nevertheless, Meltzer notes that decision time will be coming at a certain point, and we will know more then.
Regarding AEW’s upcoming Double Or Nothing Event, Meltzer noted that he is certain that there will be a streaming service involved so that people can watch along at home, as well as the traditional option of watching on PPV. There are reportedly several options from the people to choose from. The higher ups in AEW have the task of selling their product to different streaming companies based on the exceptional ticket sales they have seen and the potential TV deals that are on the table.
In a recent interview with Wrestling Inc.’s WINCLY Podcast, AEW Executive Vice President Cody Rhodes mentioned that a major TV deal remains an important aspect of AEW’s ongoing exposure. Rhodes expound only a bit further, claiming that their potential deal could create a “massive shift in the pro wrestling industry”.
“I can’t talk about it but I know that I was quoted as saying – not by you guys – that, ‘A TV deal was not important.’ And I think that in the context I was speaking, I was talking about how important social media and do-it-yourself brands are compared to the traditional TV median,” Rhodes explained. “But I also – let’s be serious, major TV is a huge thing, and it would be a massive shift in the pro wrestling industry. It would be a change-the-world-like move. But I can’t talk about any pending TV deals.
“A lot of the information that’s out there is very accurate about what we’re seeking to do and how frequently we’re seeking to do it,” Rhodes continued on. “But I don’t want to discourage any future partners. I can say that people have been really calculated about how we roll out announcements. We want to be proper. We can’t just stand on the podium in Jacksonville and say, ‘Hey, here’s the entire business model, here’s all of our plans, here’s x-amount of money.’ We can’t do that. I know the business of the business is very entertaining but I think if people put their trust in us like they have, we won’t let them down.”
AEW’s Double Or Nothing takes place on May 25th from The MGM Garden Arena in Las Vegas, Nevada.
Source: Wrestling Observer Newsletter