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Discussion Starter #1
Sports are huge in the US. You have the special Monday night football, world series, NBA playoffs, Nascar, etc etc.

Fox brought over Smackdown. They invested a lot in it. Without getting off-topic and into a discussion about ratings and success and such so far - I don't exactly see Smackdown as a "big sporting event", like you might a championship game. It's more a regular season game. It'd be like Fox paying MLB to have regular season games, but not also get the World Series. Or paying for the NFL regular season, without being able to broadcast the Super Bowl.

I think it could be a smart business decision on both WWE and Fox's part to come up with 2-4 special PPV's that air on the Network tv, exclusively.

These should not be in addition to yearly PPV's. We have enough, and if you get too much you just further dilute the interest in them. Not Wrestlemania - but 2-4 other ones. Maybe even a major one like Summerslam. Promote and build those to air on FOX, instead of the WWE Network.
These don't have to be Smackdown exclusive, it could be both (or all 3 brands?). Make them a huge deal. Sell big money commercials for them. Try to get really, really high viewership/ratings.

But basically - in addition to airing Smackdown on tv every week - this would be the 1-2 big events Fox can build fan interest towards each year. And you'd have to load up the card big time. This is your absolute best bet at attracting new fans. Bring in enough big names to attract casuals - and once they're there, hook them with some of the newer content. It's on free tv, so it's hassle free for casuals/non-fans to check it out - and if they like it, they'll stick around and come back for the weekly shows too.

Example - have Hogan, Stone Cold, or Rock if possible have a major role in the first event. Promote the hell out of it. Air the "PPV" Sunday night on Fox TV (or Saturday night). Have some really huge feuds/match in the event, enough to hook casual viewers into tuning into the tv show the following week.

What do you guys think? Do you think this is a model that could be successful for WWE and Fox in the future?

I feel like WWE and FOX aren't getting as much out of their deal as they could. Why air "regular season" sports, when you could air the playoffs/championships?
 

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The amount networks pay for NFL, NBA, MLB etc is vastly more than the $200m per year fox pays for SD though. One game of Monday night football costs ESPN $133 million, one game and that will increase when tv deal is up next yeae

So unless fox dramatically increased the money they are paying it wouldn't be worth wwes time. Network brings in $200m a year for WWE with Summerslam, rumble and mania major reasons for that. Remove them and I don't think network is a profitable entity
 

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Discussion Starter #3
The amount networks pay for NFL, NBA, MLB etc is vastly more than the $200m per year fox pays for SD though. One game of Monday night football costs ESPN $133 million, one game and that will increase when tv deal is up next yeae

So unless fox dramatically increased the money they are paying it wouldn't be worth wwes time. Network brings in $200m a year for WWE with Summerslam, rumble and mania major reasons for that. Remove them and I don't think network is a profitable entity

I'm definitely not suggesting WWE remove the WWE Network. I'm suggesting they "double dip". Try to create a big PPV event/feel for Fox.
They've done it the past couple of years with Saudi Arabia, which is hugely controversial for obvious reasons. It brings them a lot of cash, but no new fans.

Do the same for free TV in the US, on Fox. It might:

1. Bring in new fans
2. Bring back old fans
3. Still be highly profitable (commercial costs for sporting events are huge)

If this is a successful undertaking - i'm sure Fox won't get this for "free" without adding to the 200M$. I agree with you there.But that's the next step. I'm more asking if this idea could work, and be successful on both sides.
 

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They should put a B PPV or two on there but it'd be horrible business from WWE's side of things to remove the big draws for the network like the big 4 (or 5 depending on if you think MitB is THAT important) PPVs or even the Saudi Arabia shows. They could do a filler ppv on TV though, had something like Stomping Grounds been on Fox instead of the WWE Network they might have made more profit from ad revenue than they would have with that month of subscriptions.
 

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It's a good concept that could work if executed properly, but it can't be around Royal Rumble-WrestleMania season as this is WWE's core focus of ppvs on their network. A ppv like card on a SmackDown in the late spring or early summer would do well as they kind of did with their version of MITB I believe a couple or so years ago, and one around Survivor Series which could involve NXT would do well.
 

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I definitely think something like this could work. From a business standpoint, it makes sense to do and is a great way to make a big profit, as well as generate big buzz. I do agree with not doing it during Royal Rumble-WrestleMania season, as you already have too much going on then.

They absolutely would have to book all the top talent in the company for the show, I even would throw in a Lesnar match, even if it's him just squashing someone, or get someone like Cena to have a match on top of that.
 

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I agree it would be good for FOX and WWE to simply say, here is the best WWE Smackdown Show each year. Last show in June... whatever. Give it a name and fans understand... if I only watch one Smackdown on FOX a year, this is the one.

It should be produced differently than the others...
Fox does really good with other sports. Allow them to make this one a little more realistic. Have a known card of matches, quick catch up of the feuds, show them entering arena like athletes, warming up in dressing room, maybe a ring announcer once in the ring. Have the actors, actresses from the Fox shows either at the event or give a "make the pick" recorded.

It should be important because...
Title matches, feuds conclude, I'd have one face or heel turn the first couple years... by the third year, as it approaches fans will try to guess who it will be... argue who it should be.

Right now I don't like it on Fox. I thought I would because I cut the cord long ago, this would allow me to watch. I haven't watched much, didn't like what little I saw. What I thought would happen did and I didn't want it to. Every time I try to watch an NFL game, some WWE guy is on with them selling Smackdown, WWE.
 

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I would think to make this work they would have to buy the rights to air a particular event like certain networks pay for the right to air the Super Bowl. I would think the event would need to be either SummerSlam or WrestleMania. My only issue with WrestleMania is that I believe the NCAA Tournament is still going on around that time. SummerSlam, I think, would be best as it is is after the MLB All Star Game and precedes the beginning of college and pro-football so I think it would draw a lot of eyeballs and could be treated as a big free (over the air) event.
 

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It's not a bad idea, especially to try and drum up new interest in the product, plus WWE ppvs on average tend to be much higher quality than the average episode.

The real problem with this aside from drawing away from the network is that nobody wants commercials interrupting their ppv match, hell that was the whole point of having ppvs in the first place.

Now WWE already shows a fair amount of ads through ppvs but they don't last long and they don't interrupt matches, if Fox could do a limited commercial deal then I could see it working, but with limited commercials and what they would have to pay WWE extra to steal ppvs from the network, would it really be worth it for Fox?
 

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I can see them doing something similar to Saturday Night's Main Event. Maybe 3-4 times a year have a special on FOX. Have 2 shows for RAW and 2 for Smackdown.
 

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Maybe a Saturday Night`s Main Event. Maybe make of couple of those themed at well (HIAC, TLC, MITB, Extreme Rules, Elimination Chamber, even Great American Bash or Evolution II). That way, WWE can go back to more traditionally named PPV names like Backlash, No Mercy, Fully Loaded, No Way Out, Unforgiven, and Bad Blood.

I think a Smackdown Roulette show is far more likely though.
 

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It would be a great idea IF it is not in addition to everything else. They already have 12 PPVs AND two Saudi shows. This really dilutes any special kind of feel. If they want to put one or two interesting PPVs on Fox and immediately have it available on the network for replays I am all for it.
 

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Yes, absolutely. Do some market research and see what time of year would be best to attract the key 18-49 demographic and do a couple super cards/PPVs. It doesn't have to be WrestleMania, but It should be a legitimate super card with high-profile matches. Another option is to put the main event portion (2-3 hours) of WrestleMania on FOX, as 4-8 hours would be way too long anyway. They can still simulcast on the WWE Network, commercial-free, with the additional content, and add some other incentives (sweepstakes or whatever).

And at the end of the day, it's not as risky as it seems. I doubt the ~1.5 million people who regularly maintain their paid WWE Network subscriptions are going to cancel because one or two PPVs end up available for free on network television with ads; and right now there's barely an uptick of 250K free trials for WrestleMania season, most of which don't end up being paid subscribers anyway. So the potential exposure on a Primetime Sunday night alone should be enough incentive for WWE to pursue it, let alone the additional revenue.
 

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There's nothing really 'special' about a show just because it airs on Fox.

We already get more 12+ PPV's a year, more if you include the Saudi shows and all the other bullshit... and it's the same performers on all the shows.

You wanna know what you're gonna get with these 'special events' on Fox? Roman Reigns vs. Baron Corbin. Becky vs. Asuka. Tag team tornado matches. New Day segments. A.K.A. the same shit you see every time you watch a WWE show.

'Special' isn't exactly a word that comes to mind.
 

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Well it'd be a cool idea to have some iteration of those wildcards a couple of times a year like they first did at the end of 2016, those were always fun shows to watch. Gives new fans a reason to tune in by having a few titles on the line during the show and having big names in the matches too.
 
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