The interesting part about this story is that RAW and SmackDown could wind up on different networks. Today the WWE cannot put their programs on non-NBC networks but a new deal would open that up. What better pro wrestling show to piggyback Bellator on than SmackDown?
A dual punch of SmackDown and Bellator on Friday nights could be exactly what Spike needs for their inconsistent MMA promotion. SmackDown may not be the ratings grabber it once was but it is still a fairly consistent show which blows away TNA Wrestling numbers. Unfortunately for TNA that scenario would be the end of their run on Spike.
It’s funny because people make jokes all of the time comparing TNA to ECW and this is the exact scenario ECW faced which helped end the company. Spike signed WWE and cut ECW. There is zero chance that Spike would keep TNA if they signed one of the WWE programs. It is time for Dixie Carter to panic and stay scared until SmackDown winds up somewhere else in 2014.
What would happen to TNA if Spike dropped them? They have their international deals here and there but with only four pay per view events as it is they would be on serious life support. Unless TNA could pull a television deal elsewhere which seems unlikely the company would be in trouble.
Would the WWE cut a sweeter deal with Spike to get rid of TNA? Maybe but I don’t think the WWE sees TNA as any competition. At the same time I wouldn’t put it past the McMahon family to take a little less from Spike knowing that they are putting a nail in the coffin of Total Non-Stop Wrestling. Maybe Dixie should tweet her new friend Stephanie McMahon and ask her about it?
I would be real curious to see what kind of cross promotion the WWE would offer Bellator if SmackDown moved to Spike. Remember, the UFC and the WWE were on Spike at the same time and the WWE never had any UFC guys on their show or vice versa. I have to think that the WWE would not be nearly as accommodating as TNA is in helping promote Bellator. Would that be a deal breaker? It certainly could be.
This may also explain why Spike or Viacom haven’t offered any kind of a bailout to TNA or at least that we know of. Many are waiting for the day where Viacom buys into TNA the way they did with Bellator. It would make sense if not for the fact that it would close up any chance of negotiating with the WWE.