Why World Wrestling Entertainment (WWE) Is Down Today

NEW YORK (TheStreet) -- World Wrestling Entertainment  (WWE) dipped 0.95% to $23.00, down 24 cents from its previous close of $23.24, at the close of the trading day on Wednesday on the heels of the news that WWE's exclusive negotiating window with NBCUniversal had expired.

The window expired last Friday, according to Variety, and the two sides could not come to a deal for the rights to WWE's television programming, which includes Monday Night Raw and Friday Night Smackdown. WWE can now negotiate with other companies, though NBCUniversal can still make a deal with WWE.

WWE is also in a bit of a battle with DISH Network  (DISH) and DIRECTV  (DTV). The professional wrestling company plans to debut the WWE Network, an all-hours streaming service that will air each of the WWE pay-per-views, on-demand content, live shows and more, on Monday, Feb. 24. The network will cost $9.99 per month, which equates to the price of approximately two pay-per-views through the traditional model.

The pricing structure of the new network effectively eliminates the cable and satellite companies from the process. The two aforementioned satellite providers are threatening not to carry the Elimination Chamber pay-per-view, which airs on Sunday, Feb. 23. This is the last pay-per-view before the WWE Network's debut.

"Clearly we need to quickly re-evaluate the economics and viability of their business with us, as it now appears the WWE feels they do not need their PPV distributors," DirecTV said in a statement, according to a Jan. 9 article in The Los Angeles Times. The statement adds that the audience for such events "has been steadily declining, and this new low-cost competitive offering will only accelerate this trend."

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