The Sports Business Journal has a behind-the-scenes look at the complex negotiations that took place for the new television rights involving WWE, NBCUniversal, and FOX, as well as ESPN and the UFC. The story was written after interviews with several industry insiders who were present for meetings or had direct knowledge of the negotiations between all parties.
It shows how Ari Emanuel and his WME-IMG company was trying to negotiate a deal for both UFC and WWE with network executives until WWE looped in CAA to represent them after Emanuel, who is friends with Vince McMahon and his Endeavor agency also owns UFC, was taken out of the equation after complaints of conflict of interest.
The in-depth story covers how talks between WWE and FOX started way before they could discuss business and the aftermath of the NBCUniversal deadline when they decided not to pick up Smackdown.
It’s a very interesting look at how these two multi billion dollar deals came around. You can read it here.