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ANTHEM SHUTTING DOWN MMA PROGRAMMING ON AXS TV, BRET HART-WWE NETWORK, HOW MUCH NXT TV WILL ACTUALLY CHANGE WITH THE MOVE TO USA NETWORK AND MORE

By Mike Johnson on 2019-09-13 10:00:00

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Has there been any talk of AEW running anywhere but the East Coast?  We like wrestling out here in Minnesota, too!

Thus far, the bulk of the shows announced are in the East Coast but they just announced Nashville and I am told there will be a Mid-West city announced soon for TV.

What do you make of Anthem/Impact shutting down all the AXS TV MMA programming?

It's sad, because MMA was a big part of what made that network unique, but it's also par for the course with what happens when someone takes over a company.  Lots of people from Lucasfilm were let go and entire projects, including animated series and video games, were shut down when Disney absorbed that company.  This is no different.  Anthem is going to re-tool the station in their own image and it's a lot cheaper to run MMA reruns than it would be to do live programming every week.    I think it really sucks people are losing their jobs and fans won't have that outlet, but it's what happens in business.

With NXT going live next week, how much is it going to suck watching them lose their match times and content to commercial breaks?

You are 100% wrong.  Currently, NXT TV runs about 44-55 minutes of content per episode and they have commercial breaks figured into those shows.  They go to black on the WWE Network and come back.  Really, a 2 hour show is about 88 minutes of content without commercial, so NXT will be adding time to their episodes.  You'll just have to actually sit through commercial breaks for them.  Don't expect any massive changes to the NXT content unless the audience numbers are beyond terrible right out of the gate, which I don't believe will be a reality.

Did I really hear someone wrestle under the name Alex Keaton on Raw?  Why would someone pick that name?

WWE picked it for him.  That was Alex Reynolds from Long Island, NY working as Keaton, which was obviously a reference to Michael J. Fox in Family Ties.

You mentioned Stampede footage was pulled from WWE Network because Bret Hart owns it.  Can you explain?

In 2015, WWE uploaded complete episodes of Stampede Wrestling TV to the WWE Network.  However, while they own everything else outright from the library, Bret Hart had secured the rights to all of his appearances in Stampede from his parents, Stu and Helen Hart, before their passing.  So, WWE can't use the footage without Bret signing off on it (aka getting paid for it) and when Hart found out the content was up there without his consent, he went to WWE and had it removed.  That's why we've never seen complete episodes or Bret/Stampede footage used since.  The two sides have never made a deal for that content, as of this writing.

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