Tony Maglio of The Wrap is reporting that All Elite Wrestling has reached a deal with WarnerMedia to air a weekly show on TNT starting this fall. According to Maglio, the deal will officially be announced shortly before WarnerMedia’s upfront event on Wednesday, May 15, at the Theater at Madison Square Garden.
All Elite Wrestling was originally announced on Jan. 1, 2019, confirming rumors that Shahid Khan, the billionaire owner of the Jacksonville Jaguars and Fulham F.C., and his son Tony would be launching a new wrestling promotion alongside a group of former Ring of Honor and New Japan Pro Wrestling wrestlers. Those wrestlers, collectively known as the Elite, include Cody and Brandi Rhodes, the Young Bucks Matt and Nick Jackson, and former IWGP Heavyweight champion Kenny Omega, who all have executive roles within the new company. Other top stars include WWE legend Chris Jericho, fellow Elite member Adam Page, former WWE Cruiserweight champion PAC (aka Neville), and former Lucha Underground stars Pentagon Jr. and Fenix. Legendary wrestling announcer and the former voice of WWF/WWE, Jim Ross, will also be working for the new promotion. AEW’s first show, Double or Nothing, will be held at the MGM Grand Garden Arena in Las Vegas on Saturday, May 25.
TNT is no stranger to wrestling. Formerly known as Turner Network Television, from 1995 to 2001 it was the home of the main TV show from Ted Turner’s now-defunct wrestling company World Championship Wrestling. WCW Monday Nitro was a smash hit during the late ‘90s, when the rivalry between WCW and WWF turned pro wrestling into a mainstream pop culture phenomenon. WCW was sold to WWF in 2001, ending a long association between Turner television and pro wrestling that extended back into the ‘70s. Between the Khan’s deep pockets, the AEW roster’s star power, and the massive reach of TNT, AEW could be poised to present the first substantial challenge to WWE’s dominance of the American wrestling industry in years.
Presumably we’ll learn concrete specifics about AEW’s television show at the WarnerMedia upfront on Wednesday. Maglio doesn’t share any information about a potential name or time slot for the show, or if this deal includes a streaming component or has any connection to potential AEW pay-per-views. Paste will be at Double or Nothing, so stay tuned for both more information on AEW’s TV deal and first-hand coverage of its first major show.