AEW head honcho Tony Khan told us his bank account was plenty big enough to fight fire with fire should WWE go commercial free for tonight’s Rampage vs. SmackDown battle.
At least for the start of the fight. TK announced this afternoon he’s kicking off his Oct. 15 broadcast on TNT with CM Punk vs. Matt Sydal, and that match won’t be interrupted by any of those pesky sponsors.
Thank you to you great wrestling fans who’ve supported @AEW on TNT for over 2 years now, & because of you fans & your support, we’re opening tonight’s LIVE #AEWRampage with @CMPunk (3-0 #AEW record) vs. @MattSydal (21-9 #AEW record), AND that match will be commercial free on TNT! pic.twitter.com/IWRumuwEG6— Tony Khan (@TonyKhan) October 15, 2021
WWE’s confirmed reports (which were based on, interestingly enough, commercials that played during last weekend’s college football coverage on FOX) that the “Supersized” portion of tonight’s 150 minute SmackDown broadcast on FS1 will also be sans ads.
It's a SUPER-SIZED #SmackDown!— WWE (@WWE) October 15, 2021
Stay locked in for a commercial-free final half hour of tonight's special 2.5 hour #SmackDown on @FS1. pic.twitter.com/TWZd1RmgId
These aren’t the only stratagems being used by the two sides. AEW is putting an hour long pre-show on YouTube at 9pm ET, headlined by a Bryan Danielson vs. Minoru Suzuki match that has portions of their audience salivating. Meanwhile, WWE will try to prevent viewers from flipping away from FS1 at 10:30pm ET with an immediate replay of the Oct. 15 SmackDown.