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Greg DeMarco’s WWE WrestleMania Saturday Results & Reaction

WWE WrestleMania Saturday is here–I for one am excited to sit down and watch. Why not take this journey with me…with my Results & Reaction!

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WWE WrestleMania 38 Saturday Night 1

WWE WrestleMania Saturday is here, and say what you want–I for one am excited to sit down and watch. Why not take this journey with me…in bullet point form with my Results & Reaction!

WWE SmackDown Tag Team Championships
Rock Boogs & Shinsuke Nakamura vs. The Usos (champions)

Shinsuke Nakamura has a storied WWE WrestleMania history, including a championship opportunity at WrestleMania 34 against AJ Styles. For Rick Boogs, this is his first WrestleMania. The Usos have been around forever–seven time Smackdown Tag Team Champions–and They The Ones.

  • Kinda shocked this is going on first–last year we had “big matches” to open each night of WrestleMania.
  • Pretty basic to start until Rock Boogs’ knee buckles. There was a VERY VERY close nearfall (superkick/Uso Splash combo) that the crowd bit on big time.
  • I feel like we are waiting for the super-human comeback for Boogs.
  • But then we get the One-D, and it’s all over.
  • Rick Boogs continues to get checked on at ringside, and he’s leaving with help (but not on a stretcher).

Winners, and STILL WWE Smackdown Tag Team Champions – The Usos (pinfall on Shinsuke)

Serviceable opener, but honestly this would have been better served as a middle of the card match. WWE has us (me?) conditioned to expect more out of the WrestleMania opener.

Happy Corbin (w/Madcap Moss) vs. Drew McIntyre

Bardon Corbin went from sad to happy, gained a friend in Madcap Moss, and now he’s got a WrestleMania showdown with 2-time WWE Champion Drew McIntyre. 

  • Madcap Moss won the Andre The Royal Giant Memorial Battle Rumble (you’re welcome, PC), but then got knocked out from one punch later in the night. Finn Balor probably should have won that one. Granted, the majority of the prior winners aren’t even with the company, so…..
  • Drew McIntyre is a millionaire, but can’t get a proper line-up on his beard. Definitely not a Maestro’s guy.
  • Jessika Carr is your referee, and we’ll likely see her again tomorrow for Edge vs. AJ.
  • Definitely not your normal WrestleMania match order tonight, at least compared to last year. We seem to be getting the undercard out of the way–although I would expect a “big match” to follow this one.
  • I wonder if we will see the barrier screens stick around after WrestleMania–it’s nor uncommon for a WrestleMania upgrade to remain in place afterward.
  • Obviously, I am highly engaged in this match.
  • Doesn’t help that Baron Corbin Sucks.
  • The action has been less than inspiring so far, but the crowd is still hot.
  • RING GENERAL BARON CORBIN (slides out to avoid the Claymore)
  • Great reaction for Shitty Beard’s dive.
  • And I do believe Drew McIntyre is indeed the first person to EVER kick out of End Of Days.
  • Crowd bought that one big time.
  • Claymore connects and we are done here.
  • Madcap teases getting involved and Angela cuts the ropes in half. That’s likely a WrestleMania moment.

Winner: Drew McIntyre (pinfall)

Not a bad affair at all, and the crowd was solidly engaged. Drew McIntyre is still insanely over, and if he is getting ready for a feud with Roman Reigns, he is in the perfect position to do so.

Rey Mysterio & Dominik Mysterio  vs. The Miz & Logan Paul

The first ever father and son tag team champions in WWE history–Rey & Dominik Mysterio–battle The Miz and mainstream social media star Logan Paul, who is making his in-ring debut.

  • Don’t know if you’ve heard, but The Mix is the only two-time Grand Slam Champion in WWE history. Acknowledge him.
  • Love the tandem stage entrances for the Mysterios
  • Babyfaces out first, but there’s a celebrity on the heel side.
  • Love the Mysterios paying homage to Los Gringos Locos–Eddie Guerrero & Art Barr
  • Has The Miz ever gone with yellow/black gear before?
  • Two straight matches with a female referee–might by a WrestleMania first.
  • The Miz & Logan Paul = The Killer Bees.
  • Logan Paul, so far, looks just as good as Bad Bunny. Acknowledge him.
  • I love how Logan Paul swoops in to hook the leg–he already has signature movements. Credit: The Miz
  • That was a BEAUTIFUL kick out of the Sunset Flip by Rey to Miz.
  • Rey showing everyone who does the best tornado DDT in the family.
  • Aside from a father/son tag team, this match is also basically trainer/trainee vs. trainer/trainee.
  • Logan Paul and The Miz win–and clean, too. I really hope Logan Paul sticks around.
  • WHAT?
  • Shocked that Miz turns on Logan Paul right there–they made a great team.

Winners: Logan Paul & The Miz (Skull Crushing Finale on Rey)

Logan Paul looked every bit as good as Bad Bunny, and deserves as much recognition and respect. Shocked that The Miz turned–if Logan Paul is going to stay around, teaming with The Miz is the way to go. I expect them to have a match at Money In The Bank.

Gable Steveson appears on stage, and I (along with plenty of others) realize I have been spelling his name wrong.

Raw Women’s Championship: Becky Lynch (champion) vs. Bianca Belair

Two pioneers battle for the Raw Women’s Championship in a match that could easily close either night of WrestleMania.

  • Bianca Belair vs. Becky Lynch, the only two women to win a WrestleMania main event (show closing style).
  • Becky Lynch legit enters and comes off as one of the biggest stars in the world.
  • Big time entrances for BOTH women, love to see it.
  • I hope Bianca Belair never stops being moved by the reaction she gets in stadiums.
  • I LOVE THIS CROWD.
  • Fantastic opening sequence, and they bought every bit of it.
  • Becky went for the quick win, then tried to use the ropes. All the callbacks.
  • Love Becky, the heel, being happy to potentially win via countout.
  • Loved Becky not using the hurricanrana and turning it into a roll-up instead.
  • Beautiful 450 Splash from the middle turnbuckle by Bianca, and another near fall that had the fans living and dying by the count.
  • Bianca out of position there–takes a heel to the face.
  • Good cover by Jimmy Smith with the Rolling Thunder Kick call, even if that wasn’t the spot.
  • Bianca might have a broken orbital bone.
  • THUNDEROUS KOD. Great finish, and given the reaction of the crowd, it was the right choice.

Winner and NEW Raw Women’s Champion: Bianca Belair (pinfall)

This was Bianca Belair’s best match to date, narrowly edging out her WrestleMania 37 showdown with Sasha Banks. Hell of a match that easily could have closed out either night of WrestleMania 38.

Seth “Freakin'” Rollins vs ???

A storied Road to WrestleMania for the visionary, with rumors swirling regarding his potential nightmare of an opponent, hand selected by Vince McMahon.

  • Jimmy Smith calling Seth the last one invited to the dance is wrong–Bobby Lashley vs. Omos was set up after.
  • Was Sasha Banks hiding in that choir, too?
  • Seth needs to refer his beard guy to Drew McIntyre.
  • Notable is the lack of a distinguished “CODY! CODY!” chant by the crowd before he comes out.
  • Hell of an entrance.

Seth “Freakin'” Rollins vs. “The American Nightmare” Cody Rhodes

  • Amazing entrance for Cody Rhodes, keeping every bit of his AEW branding (kinda wish he used the past few weeks for tattoo removal).
  • Cody looks emotionally torn–and I get it.
  • The biggest way in which Cody has grown over the past six years is his in-ring storytelling.
  • Cody Rhodes is a 16-year in-ring veteran, back in WWE, and it just feels right. Good for Cody.
  • Great main event style match going on here, between two former ROH World Champions.
  • BEARHUG!
  • Is “Frickin'” an accepted alternative to “Freakin'”?
  • Rando on Twitter doesn’t like my Tony Khan tweet.

  • Urban Meyer lookalike in the crowd SHOCKED by the powerbomb to the barricade.
  • CROSS RHODES AND SETH KICKS OUT!
  • Top Rope Inverted Superplex!
  • Cody kicks out of death like he’s still in AEW!
  • Cody not quite in his usual ring shape, but that will change.
  • PEDIGREE TEASE by Cody! Give that man a sledgehammer!
  • CODY CUTTER!
  • This match has had everything. What else do we get?
  • Aaaaaaaaaaaand Cody kicks out of the Pedigree.
  • 2 Cross Rhodes + Dusty Punches & Bionic Elbow + 1 last Cross Rhodes and we’re done.
  • MAJOR PROPS to Vince for letting Cody go over clean.

Winner: Cody Rhodes (pinfall)

The match was fantastic, might end up being match of the night thanks to the emotion involved. Seth is still a notch above Cody as a performer, but Cody being the storyteller  he is, he comes in as a top guy in WWE. I think we’ll see this match again, this isn’t one and done.

Welcome home, Cody. You belong here.

WWE SmackDown Women’s Championship
Ronda Rousey vs. Charlotte Flair (champion)

Ronda Rousey had a meteoric rise in her first year in WWE, winning the Raw Women’s Championship, main eventing WrestleMania, and opening the door for many “outsiders” to continue to find their way in. Her first run included a match with Charlotte Flair at Survivor Series. Tonight, Ronda enters as the challenger, having won the Women’s Royal Rumble Match, and Charlotte Flair enters as a 13-time women’s champion.

  • Nothing different about their entrances, but both are stars.
  • I do wonder if New Day vs. Sheamus & Ridge Holland (with Pete “Butch” Dunne) is getting bumped to tomorrow–possibly on the Kickoff.
  • Ronda Rousey brings an element to the women’s division that no one else has (Sonya Deville is close, as is Shayna Baszler). She absolutely stands out–in a good way.
  • Brutal battle early on, crowd has finally died down a little bit.
  • Love the Top Rope Judo Throw by Ronda.
  • Ronda’s unorthodox style is really bringing out different elements from Charlotte–who is really emerging as a ring general.
  • I don’t want to say “like her Dad” because she stands on her own, but…like her Dad.
  • Ronda winning with a leg lock would be interesting–since she promised to take her arm.
  • After both escape the 10-count on the outside, it seems like we are pumping emotion into this match to match the brutality.
  • Charles Robinson’s hand hit for 3, well after Charlotte’s leg hit the ropes.
  • GREAT nearfall after the Natural Selection.
  • I feel like Charlotte has to win here, but I have no clue how.
  • And there’s the ref bump.
  • Big Boot, and we’re out.

Winner, and STILL SmackDown Women’s Champion: Charlotte Flair (pinfall)

This was a brutal fight between Charlotte Flair and Ronda Rousey. Both delivered on what was a unique contest, one I really enjoyed. I don’t think it played well on a big stadium, that’s a Chicago arena match.

The KO Show: Kevin Owens with special guest “Stone Cold” Steve Austin

Kevin Owens was going to be shut out of WrestleMania, but he laid down a big challenge–for an interview segment. But the man he called out, the highest grossing performer of all time, happens to be “Stone Cold” Steve Austin, and Owens found himself in a show closing segment.

  • It does appear New Day vs. Sheamus & Ridge Holland got bumped–here’s hoping we see it tomorrow.
  • Kevin Owens is brilliant, drawing all kinds of heat.
  • And that pop–THAT is why this is going on last.
  • “I would have moved to Mexico–IT’S RIGHT THERE!”
  • After the jokes and the crowd responses, Kevin Owens challenges Steve Austin to a match. A No Holds Barred Match…right here, right now!
  • And after some prodding–he had his first match in Dallas, Texas, and he can have his last match in Dallas, Texas.
  • A few “Hell Yeah”s later, we have a ref and a match.

No Holds Barred
Kevin Owens vs. “Stone Cold” Steve Austin

  • I have never heard such a pop for a bell ringing.
  • We got our first beer early into the match–figured we’d save those for the end.
  • Think we’ll see any other Texans?
  • Austin tosses Owens to the outside, and now the real fun can begin.
  • And now we are brawling in the crowd–it’s an Austin WrestleMania match!
  • Suplex to the floor on Austin???
  • How crazy would it be if Owens wins?
  • Now we go for a little ATV ride up the ramp and battle it out on the stage. Austin is pleasing the crowd with everything here.
  • STUNNER TO STONE COLD!
  • Of course he kicked out!
  • CHAIRSHOT, Stunner, and we’re out.
  • Beers, Stunner to Owens again!
  • Police–in cowboy hats–escort Owens out.
  • Lots of beer everywhere.
  • Toast and chug with the ref.
  • STUNNER TO BYRON SAXTON!

Winner: “Stone Cold” Steve Austin (pinfall)

Career highlight for Kevin Owens, and Steve Austin gets to go out in Texas. You have to wonder if we’ll get a Kevin Owens episode of Broken Skull Sessions in the coming months.

Some slow points to start the night off, but once the third match started, it was all killer and very little filler. A satisfying, exciting, enjoyable night of WrestleMania. And we still have another night to go!


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Opinion

Greg DeMarco’s 2024 WWE Royal Rumble Reaction

It’s the Royal Rumble! A favorite of many fans, the Rumble kicks off the Road To WrestleMania. Greg DeMarco is here with his live reactions to the event!

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WWE Royal Rumble 2024 Results

It’s the Royal Rumble! A favorite of many fans, the Rumble kicks off the Road To WrestleMania. Greg DeMarco is here with his live reactions to the event!

The WWE Royal Rumble is upon us, and while the Men’s Royal Rumble Match isn’t for the World Heavyweight Championship like I suggested, it’s still the most anticipated event of the year.

Why? The Unknown.

That’s right–in this age of the internet (usually incorrectly) telling us everything it possibly can about what is going to happen in the world of wrestling, the Royal Rumble stands out because despite what we’re told (or, more importantly, what we choose to listen to), the event is always full of fun and surprises.


Check out Steven Mitchell’s 2024 WWE Royal Rumble Results & Review!


Women’s Royal Rumble Match

  • They really are driving home the “main event WrestleMania” point this year–strengthens my thought that women will main event Night 1. Triple H would catch a ton of heat if he keeps women out for the third straight year.
  • NAOMI! Good to see her back, and the emotional response she had.
  • Love Michael Cole calling out Naomi’s time in TNA, and recognizing her as a former Knockouts Champion.
  • Entering #3 doesn’t bode well for Bayley. I honestly don’t think she is gonna win.
  • JORDYNNE GRACE! I saw the reports earlier today. This is a much bigger deal than Mickie James, because Mickie was a returning legend.
  • “TNA HAS A WEAPON!” So glad to have Pat McAfee on the call.
  • Honestly, Jordynne Grace belongs in WWE.

  • Asuka comes in, and they sell the surprise of Bayley. STORYTELLING, people!
  • Something tells me when we get Kairi Sane in there, The Kabuki Warriors will eliminate Bayley.
  • Ivy Nile enters, and I immediately want to see her go toe-to-toe with Jordynne Grace.
  • What if they pulled some crazy sh*t and had Jordynne Grace win???
  • Just step through the ropes next time, Bianca.
  • When I first saw the C4 clock, I thought I would get tired of it But I am already used to it.
  • Here’s Kairi Sane, time to set the plan into motion!
  • This crowd does not appear to like Tegan Nox.
  • Welp, there goes my idea o Asuka and Kairi eliminating Bayley.
  • That was a hell of a way for Jordynne Grace to go out.

  • I think Michael Cole secretly loves to call a Meteora.
  • There’s a reason Maxxine Dupri doesn’t wrestle much.
  • That tandem Code Red was very Young Buckish. And that’s not a compliment.
  • Hair,…gear…this might be the messiest Royal Rumble yet.
  • Ah, here comes the winner, Becky Lynch (I am calling Becky eliminates Bayley to win her second Royal Rumble).
  • LOVE the scoreboard of time in the Rumble for selected wrestlers.

  • R-TRUTH?!?! (Funny story, it was Truth’s spot that Nia Jax took in 2019.)
  • If you push Mia Yim, she’ll take it further than you could imagine.
  • “How is everybody the most athletic person on Earth?” – Pat McAfee
  • Surprising that Roxanne Perez, at #27, is the first NXT entrant. I don’t think we’ll be seeing Tiffany Stratton of Blair Davenport since we only have 3 more to come.
  • Amazing reaction for Jade Cargill. Give her time, she’s definitely going to be a huge star.
  • JUST GIVE HER TIME.
  • Seriously, Nia Jax had to help Jade eliminate her–A LOT.

  • Greg Was Wrong: It is indeed Tiffy Time in the Royal Rumble.
  • Back to Jade–she is insanely over.
  • I know it won’t be, but this should be Tiffany Stratton’s official main roster call-up.
  • Liv Morgan returns at #30, and good for Liv. She nearly went wire-to-wire last year.
  • Liv Morgan: “Thank you!” Pat McAfee: “No problem.”
  • Tiffany Stratton eliminating Roxanne Perez is, to me, an invitation for a match with them on Raw this Monday.
  • Still love the scoreboard as Naomi passes an hour.
  • The camera is catching a lot of in-ring communications right now.
  • And Jade Cargill eliminates my pick to win. Bye Becky.
  • Jade Cargill in the final three of the Royal Rumble (with Liv Morgan and Bayley) is huge for her.
  • Hell of a debut for Jade Cargill.
  • And a huge win for Bayley.

Winner of the 2024 Women’s Royal Rumble Match: Bayley (eliminating Liv Morgan to win)

Fatal 4-Way Match for the Undisputed WWE Universal Championship: Randy Orton vs AJ Styles vs. LA Knight vs. Roman Reigns (champion, with Paul Heyman)

  • Glad to see AJ Styles got his tights back. Pants AJ Styles (but still with the football gloves) was not working. Not just bring the beard back to your face Allen–the think beard also ain’t working.

  • Pat McAfee campaigning for Roman Reigns to be given at least a 26% chance is amazing.
  • Say what you want about LA Knight, he’s a damn star and totally belongs in this match.
  • Roman completely sandbagged Randy on the table drop. I don’t think it was on purpose, but he definitely didn’t jump.
  • Roman Reigns is very much like Gunther in that he does the simple things SO WELL, like a jumping clothesline. That’s how you do it.
  • Yes, I compared Roman Reigns to Gunther. Don’t @ me, I’m right.

  • RKO City, Bitch.
  • Aaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaand here’s Solo! (At some point, Solo will get tired of saving Roman’s ass.)
  • Solo ’bout to go through that barricade.
  • Solo indeed went through that barricade.

  • Yes, we had the Solo interference mid-match, but honestly in the end Roman won that clean.

Winner, #ANDSTILL your Undisputed WWE Universal Champion: Roman Reigns

WWE United States Championship: Kevin Owens vs. Logan Paul (champion)

  • Kevin Owens wearing Zubaz shorts in the Performance Center fight makes me very happy.
  • Logan Paul talking about a full time run, and now he’s putting on size.
  • Logan’s headband didn’t list very long.
  • I honestly hate it when modern-day wrestlers bust out a crotch chop.
  • If you were watching the Royal Rumble and didn’t know who Logan Paul was, you’d just assume he was a pro wrestler. That says everything you need to know about how good he is at this.
  • ANOTHER crotch chop. Now we’re at 2 too many.

  • Cue the “Better Buckshot Than Hangman” tweets. But they might be right.
  • I love the idea of a Logan Paul, Austin Theory, and Grayson Waller stable.
  • C’mon, there’s NO WAY Ryan Tran could see the knucks on Kevin Owens’ hand given his placement. It’s the little things.
  • Finish here tells me we’ll see KO vs. Logan Paul again. I’d guess on TV, if not in Australia.

Winner by disqualification, #ANDSTILL WWE United States Champion: Logan Paul

Men’s Royal Rumble Match

  • Jey Uso coming at #1 was expected thanks to the internet reports. But I still think Jimmy should be #1 and Jey #2, for the reaction shots on Jimmy.
  • Grayson Waller talking himself to the ring is perfect.
  • “No Yeet!” Grayson is a brilliant performer. I’d make a Roddy Piper comparison here, but y’all would get at mad at me.
  • Good to have Andrade back in WWE. Great reaction for him when the mask came off.

  • SmackDown superstar Carmelo Hayes! I really really really hope Trick is also in this match, just for the chants.
  • Melo pointed to the sign, C’mon, man.
  • Do you send Andrade to Smackdown, or do you send him to Raw and let him do his own thing?
  • Oh goody, Karrion Kross is here. Yay.
  • (Yes, that’s sarcasm you read.)
  • Dominik Mysterio is so good. Give him time, he’s going to be a huge star.

  • The Royal Rumble was a great place for the Apple Spot.
  • Here comes Bob Lashley–please just eliminate Karrion Kross.
  • Lashley wearing the WrestleMania white gear more than 2 months early.
  • Austin Theory still gets his concussion effect entrance, despite it being the Rumble.
  • What if–hear me out now–Finn Balor wins the Royal Rumble to get the shot at Seth Rollins, and Priest uses his briefcase to make that match a triple threat at ‘Mania?
  • I know he didn’t, but it sure looked like Jimmy was swerving while he drives in that interaction with Gunther.
  • Kofi did tell us the Rumble Magic wasn’t happening anymore.
  • Give me Ivar vs Gunther!
  • Bron Breakker is a star. It’s inevitable.
  • Of course Omos would be in the Rumble. Good to see MVP on my TV as well.
  • “I didn’t know humans came that big!” – Pat McAfee
  • I half think Pat McAfee didn’t know he was entering the Rumble.
  • Nice moment for Bron Breakker eliminating Omos. WrestleMania match?
  • R-Truth trying to get Dominik (Tom or Nick?) Mysterio to tag him in is brilliant.
  • DOM MADE THE TAG!!!
  • “And now R-Truth is the legal man.” – thank you Michael Cole.
  • Michael Cole delivers multiple TNA references tonight, along with a Dolph Ziggler reference. God Bless Michael Cole.
  • Imagine for a second that this was CM Punk’s actual WWE return.
  • The reaction to Drew McIntyre’s entrance is a reminder that they don’t actually need him.
  • Sami Zayn enters at #30, also known as “Not The Rock.”

  • In the ring, Drew McIntyre is amazing. Just keep the microphone away from him. (And stop the damn counting!)
  • And there goes my choice for the Men’s Rumble!
  • Love having both Roman Reigns and Seth Rollins in the press boxes watching to see who wins.
  • Punk kinda looks like Chris Jericho in there. Seriously.
  • Between Punk and Cody, Cody is the right choice. I really don’t want to watch Punk right now–he needs to hit the cardio, and hard. Given Seth Rollins’ injury and Punk’s conditioning, WWE would be smart to make the World Heavyweight Championship match at WrestleMania 40 a multi-man match.

Winner of the 2024 Men’s Royal Rumble: Cody Rhodes


Overall thoughts on the 2024 WWE Royal Rumble

For at least the second straight year, the Men’s Royal Rumble Match was kinda disappointing. Not the result–that’s fine. But the match itself. It just wasn’t nearly as exciting as the Women’s. Of the four matches, I would place it 4th in terms of enjoyment.

Great moments for both Bayley and Cody Rhodes. Logan Paul continually shows that he deserves to be considered a pro wrestler, not a celebrity who is wrestling. Pat McAfee is a joy on commentary. Jordynne Grace is a WWE Superstar, regardless of what company she is signed to. Bron Breakker is a star.CM Punk is very out of shape. Cody Rhodes is about to become THE guy, and he deserves it.

Overall I give the event a thumbs up, but they have to do something about the Men’s Royal Rumble Match moving forward.


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WWE Raw Heads To Netflix: What Does It Mean?

Monumental news drops as WWE RAW is moving to Netflix. Is it truly a game changing move? Greg DeMarco analyzes this shift for the TV wrestling business.

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WWE Logo Metalic

Monumental news drops as WWE RAW is moving to Netflix. Is it truly a game changing move? Greg DeMarco analyzes this shift for the TV wrestling business.

Being a wee little kid in the 80s, I am “lucky enough” to remember having 3 TV channels, and my dad explaining what an 8-track is, how shocked I was when I say a laser disc for the first time, when I bought a 6 CD changer, installed my own car stereo, and all the way up to the fact that I have now been watching WWE pay-per-view/premium live events on the WWE Network and Peacock for 10 years. Hell, in the same month (February 2014) I signed up for the WWE Network, cut the cord to drop cable and got Sling TV. I have since moved onto YouTube TV which is highly recommended.

Over the last two years the NFL has put Thursday Night Football on Amazon Prime, simulcast to various streaming services, and less than 2 weeks ago put a playoff game exclusively on streaming when a Wildcard Weekend showdown between the Chiefs and Dolphins was only shown on Peacock.

And now it’s fully permeated into pro wrestling.

WWE and AEW are both in the midst of a very important time on the business side, with all of their TV rights up for grabs. The first domino fell when SmackDown On FOX became SmackDown on USA Network, and soon after we learned that WWE NXT was moving to broadcast television and joining The CW (which is also rebranding, but just to CW).

The AEW suite of programming that includes Collision, Rampage, and their most successful show Dynamite is up for renewal with Warner Bros/Discovery, and Tony Khan has been optimistic about the relationship and potentially an increase in rights fees.

That brings us to Tuesday morning, and the likely groundbreaking WWE announcement that Raw is moving to Netflix, starting in January 2025. Triple H tweeted that they’re changing the game, and TKO President and COO Mark Shapiro (who knows a thing or two about shifts in media consumption) used the word “transformative” in his statement, and I really think he couldn’t be more right.

But what does it all mean?

Wrestling Remains A Strong Media Product

I have been claiming this for over a year now. As many online will cite a decline in TV viewership for both WWE and AEW, the TV product has been a strong value to networks. Even in dropping SmackDown, FOX themselves said they didn’t pump enough resources into the show, and that the advertising return wasn’t what they wanted. That doesn’t mean the product (TV value, we’re not talking about creative here) isn’t strong. It’s so strong that USA Network picked up SmackDown for $280 million per year, giving WWE an increase over the FOX deal. CW is paying $20-$25 million annually for NXT, and now Netflix is paying $500 million for RAW.

Why? Because wrestling isn’t just a strong media product, it’s consistent. And that is key.

Look at this quote from Netflix Chief Content Officer Bela Bajaria:

“Raw is the best of sports entertainment, blending great characters and storytelling with live action 52 weeks a year and we’re thrilled to be in this long-term partnership with WWE.”

Now cross reference that with a comment from CW President Dennis Miller from back when the CW/NXT deal was announced:

“We are thrilled to welcome the WWE brand into the CW Sports portfolio as they play an integral role in our mission to bring live sporting events to the network year-round.”

What do those statements have in common? The year-round, 52-week nature of wrestling programming. It’s an unbeatable value for networks. It’s cheaper than a deal with a major sports league, and it’s not finite. Wrestling joins news, talk, and sports talk as the only year-round programming available to networks. And WWE and AEW have shows that essentially always land in the Top 5 after you factor out live sports. You can’t beat it.

What Does This Mean for Netflix?

Don’t get it twisted, this is also a huge leap for Netflix. Prior to the WWE Raw deal, Netflix has only experimented with live events, streaming the live Chris Rock “Selective Outrage” special, and showing The Netflix Cup live (a golf event featuring athletes from their F1 series “Drive To Survive” and their golf series “Full Swing).

WWE is the perfect partner for Netflix as it gets into live programming. It’s sports entertainment: sports like programming (which Netflix has done) that focuses on storytelling (which Netflix has obviously done). And no one does it better than WWE. It’s essentially plug-and-play for Netflix, the perfect solution for their live programming aspirations.

The perfect solution that they were willing to pay $5 billion for.

What Does This Mean for AEW?

The biggest risk to an AEW renewal with Warner Bros Discovery was WBD picking up WWE Raw–and that risk has been eliminated by Netflix. Don’t discount that fact–Netflix did Tony Khan a huge favor by throwing $500 million per at WWE. The path is clear for AEW to remain on the Turner networks.

But at what price?

I know I usually write as if I have all the answers, but I have zero idea either way on this one. WBD no longer has any other options if it wants to keep wrestling (except for TNA, who recently expressed a desire to be on a bigger network), and AEW (at least, Dynamite) is a weekly Top 5 program for them on Wednesdays, on cable.

On the other hand, AEW doesn’t exactly have another network begging for their services. The reason WWE could get a yearly increase for Raw, SmackDown, and NXT is because it was truly a bidding war. Unless Tony Khan gets another network involved, any threat of walking away from a deal doesn’t really hold water.

So if I were a betting man (and who would ever bet on this) I would expect an announcement of a renewal for AEW and WBD relatively soon. We may not know the terms of the deal, I will take a shot in the dark and say that AEW gets a small increase (not the “nearly double” that had been reported last year).

Regardless of the increase (or not), given AEW’s recent attendance challenges, this likely renewal would have to be viewed as a win for the company.


Personally, this is simply an amazing time to be a fan. We’ve seen WWE go from one live TV show per week with Monday Night Raw, through the Monday Night Wars, the addition of SmackDown and later NXT, to being this global juggernaut that is commanding half-a-billion dollars per year for Raw. I also think this makes Raw the flagship once again. All of this comes after Vince McMahon is largely out of power, Triple H has taken over creative (and holds a pretty good success rate so far), and the company was sold to Endeavor, and merged with the UFC as a business entity under the TKO banner.

If you know me, you know I am a huge follower of the business side of the wrestling business. I often care less about WHAT wrestling companies do, but HOW they do it. I have always gravitated towards that, since middle school. And for the past near 24 months, I have been like a kid in a candy store.

The Peacock deal for the WWE Network runs out in 2026, right? The fun never stops!


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