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‘WWE Raw’ Heads to Netflix

An exciting and unlikely partnership between Netflix and TKO for “WWE Raw” is here.


What better way to start off the new year than with a Raw deal? That’s right, Netflix is officially entering the sports entertainment world with a bang with its new deal with TKO for WWE Raw streaming rights.

And That’s The Bottom Line

Once exclusive to USA Network since its inception in 1993, Raw has found a new home on Netflix for the next ten years. For $5 billion, Netflix has secured exclusive streaming rights to the wrestling sweetheart. These rights apply to Canada, Latin America, the U.K., and the U.S. The deal, however, is complicated because of Peacock’s involvement. Due to dealings made prior in 2021, Peacock has domestic rights to WWE. Netflix needs not shed any tears as they have the market cornered outside of the U.S. This deal will also involve other shows outside of Raw, such as SmackDown, NXT, SummerSlam, and many more programs.

Can You Dig It?

It’s no secret that Netflix has been trying its best to worm its way into the sports industry, and it’s not hard to see why. With cable on its deathbed, more and more streaming platforms are trying to give viewers the whole shebang. Disney+, for example, offers ESPN+ on their higher tiers. With wrestling having gone through a resurgence over the last decade, it should be no surprise that Netflix would use it to enter the world of sports entertainment. As Deadline reports, a number of streaming giants have been nabbing sports away from cable packages.

An exciting and unlikely partnership between Netflix and TKO for “WWE Raw” is here.
Nov 22, 2021; Brooklyn, NY, USA; Bianca Belair (pink attire) and Tamina (black attire) wrestle during WWE Raw at Barclays Center. Mandatory Credit: Joe Camporeale-USA TODAY Sports

From football and fútbol to baseball, no sport has been safe from the clutches of streaming platforms. It’s not hard to see why streaming services can easily make these deals. Even when considering licensing issues in different countries, streaming platforms like Netflix will be able to easily bring this kind of entertainment to a much larger audience.

Eat Your Vitamins And Say Your Prayers

The fact that fans of WWE outside of the U.S. will have an easier time watching the franchise is certainly something to celebrate, but that doesn’t mean that this is all good news. A long and ongoing trend has been growing amidst the numerous streaming deals being made. At one point, cable was considered inconvenient because customers had to purchase unnecessary packages to get access to the one channel they actually watched. This was, at one point, what made streaming services so appealing in the first place. At first, subscribers could get access to all their favorite shows or films in one place, which made it convenient for the average person. Now, if someone wants access to the entirety of a single show, they’ll have to subscribe to multiple services. The same can already be said of streaming sports. As mentioned above, fans of WWE Raw who also have Netflix subscriptions will only have partial access to the wrestling library. A large portion of wrestling programs will remain exclusive to Peacock due to previous contracts. Things have seemingly gone full circle now, and “that’s the bottom line.” Fans can expect the big change to come in January of 2025.

An exciting and unlikely partnership between Netflix and TKO for “WWE Raw” is here.
Image courtesy WWE.

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A lover of gore and over the top violence, no movie can make my stomach squirm. The only thing better than a bloody death scene is a well choreographed stunt. Whether it be action or horror, if it has blood in it, then I've likely already seen it.
Elke Simmons' writing portfolio includes contributions to The Laredo Morning Times, Walt Disney World Eyes and Ears, Extinction Rebellion (XR) News/Blog, and Dead Talk News.