Report: SmackDown to Remain a Live Show After WWE's TV Deal with Fox

Mike Chiari@mikechiariFeatured ColumnistMay 31, 2018

Roman and Seth celebrate in the ring during the WWE show at Zenith Arena on may 09, 2017 in Lille, France. / AFP PHOTO / PHILIPPE HUGUEN        (Photo credit should read PHILIPPE HUGUEN/AFP/Getty Images)
PHILIPPE HUGUEN/Getty Images

WWE's SmackDown Live will reportedly remain a live show when it moves from USA Network to Fox, despite shifting from Tuesdays to Fridays beginning in October 2019.

According to Tony Maglio of The Wrap, SmackDown going live on Fridays will likely cause a shift in WWE's house show schedule since it currently holds live events on Fridays.

Maglio reported on May 21 that WWE agreed to a five-year, $1 billion deal with Fox to begin airing SmackDown on the station next year.

SmackDown went live in 2016 after moving from Syfy to USA Network. WWE's blue brand has been part of NBCUniversal since 2010.

While NBCU is expected to retain the rights to Raw, the deal between WWE and Fox for SmackDown will reportedly become official next week, per Maglio.

SmackDown was a taped show for much of its existence, but since going live, it has been viewed on a more equal level with Raw.

Despite Raw often being heralded as WWE's flagship show, it can be argued that SmackDown offers the superior product with a roster boasting the likes of Daniel Bryan, AJ Styles, Samoa Joe, Shinsuke Nakamura, The Miz, Charlotte Flair, Asuka, New Day, The Usos and many other top Superstars.

By maintaining its live status on a widely watched network in the form of Fox, SmackDown is in position to challenge Raw for its billing as WWE's top weekly show.

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