It appears AEW's new tv deal with Turner is said to be "virtually done," and Tony Khan and other AEW stars will announce the news at WarnerMedia Upfronts.
Tony Maglio of The Wrap reports AEW President Tony Khan and some of the AEW wrestlers are expected to represent the upstart wrestling promotion on Wednesday at Madison Square Garden in New York City for the WarnerMedia Upfronts. Just prior to the 10 am start time, it is also expected AEW will announce their new tv deal.
The deal is with Turner Broadcasting and while details of the deal likely won't be released or the financial terms disclosed, it is said to be a very lucrative deal.
Twitter insider @fightoracle earlier reported the news of AEW's presence at the upfronts and also said the intention was for AEW to premiere in October (around the same time WWE moves to FOX). Via the latest information released, AEW will air Tuesday nights and likely on TNT.
Cody Rhodes called the news massive and one that could potentially shift the professional wrestling industry. A two-hour program that gives WWE fans a weekly alternative on a huge tv network is a big opportunity and something WWE should be concerned about.
Report: AEW Television Deal With Turner Is "Virtually Done;" Weekly Show To Air On TNT This Fall https://t.co/cVPmu6d43z— Sean Ross Sapp of Fightful.com (@SeanRossSapp) May 9, 2019
What exactly Cody and company will say on Wednesday is unclear but the one thing AEW has maintained as they've grown in popularity is their strategy for rolling out big news. Rhodes said:
"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."
What This Means
If this report is accurate and AEW is set to announce a big tv deal, this is a huge moment for wrestling fans who have been waiting for the product to improve overall. There is no denying that when both WWE and WCW existed, the product of both shows was better. AEW being a major player has, to at least, give WWE a kick in the pants to improve their product.
After all, they are already asking viewers to watch seven hours of wrestling content per week. If two of those hours now go to AEW, WWE stands to lose a lot of money.