By Jason Powell, ProWrestling.net Editor (@prowrestlingnet)
WarnerMedia’s Turner Drama is listed as the new frontrunner to land the National Hockey League’s second television package, according to TSN reporter Bob McKenzie. While the deal is not official, NBC has reportedly dropped out of the bidding for the NHL’s second television package. ESPN recently landed the primary NHL television package.
Powell’s POV: It’s an interesting development as far as pro wrestling goes to say the least. We initially assumed that NXT’s move to Tuesday nights on USA Network was to make room for the NHL’s Wednesday night doubleheaders. Obviously, that’s not going to happen now that NBC has pulled out of the bidding, which WWE executive Nick Khan seemed to foreshadow during Thursday’s WWE first quarter financial call.
But what does this mean for AEW Dynamite and Turner Drama? Turner already has an NBA television package and could end up adding the NHL package on top of that. AEW has a deal with Turner through 2023, but this potential development does raise the possibility of a night change or at least more preemptions. Did NXT move to Tuesdays because they anticipate AEW Dynamite eventually doing the same? Probably not.
Tony Khan initially hoped that Dynamite would air on Tuesdays, but the TNT deal with the NBA didn’t allow that to happen and that presumably remains an obstacle. It could be as simple as Dynamite staying put on TNT on Wednesdays while TBS or another Turner network airs the NHL doubleheader, or perhaps the NHL doubleheader simply moves to a different night. So while only time will tell how the NHL moving to Turner would affect AEW, it’s clearly a story worth following.
Not official by any means but I’m hearing NHL’s new (secondary 🇺🇸) broadcast partner is likely to be @tntdrama, which of course produces @NBAonTNT et al. @espn is NHL’s primary 🇺🇸 broadcast partner. https://t.co/pd26AqlvZh
— Bob McKenzie (@TSNBobMcKenzie) April 26, 2021