Earlier this week UK fans were minutes away from having the WWE Network available for them to subscribe to, only for the WWE to delay the launch once more.
This obviously didn’t sit well with the UK fans as they have all had to wait longer than most for the Network, only for it to be delayed once again.
The sudden delay had many speculating that Sky had stepped in and stopped the WWE from launching the Network due to Sky being the home of WWE programming in the UK and they still run the majority of pay-per-views on Sky Box Office.
The backlash from the UK WWE fans saw Sky respond on social media, playing down reports that they had stepped in and halted the launch, telling their customers and followers that it was the WWE’s decision to delay the launch and that the WWE Network is an independent service, one they won’t be providing.
Vince McMahon, the chairman of the WWE also apologised to the UK fans, telling them that they are working ‘day and night’ to resolve this issue.
- WWE UK Network launch delayed at the last minute
- Survivor Series should see a WWE debut
- McMahon personally apologizes to UK fans after Network failure
CHANNEL WITH SKY TV
The news the UK fans desperately didn’t want to hear; prowrestling.net have reported that Sky Sports could be offering the Network as a channel, which is what many believed the reason was for the delay earlier this week.
They’ve reported that a Sky Sports representative on a live customer service chat told a customer:
“Yes, we will launch it as a channel with Sky TV. Currently we don’t have any details but it will be going to be soon…And you will be notified by adv, email or call.”
It’s up to the fans whether they want to believe these reports or not, but don’t be surprised if that’s what actually goes down in the coming weeks or months.
There is a chance that the representative might not be informed about the situation, but nevertheless this wouldn’t be an ideal situation. This puts the UK version of the Network in a similar boat to what Canada is currently being offered.
BAD NEWS FOR UK FANS
The way it is distributed in Canada is that it’s available to select markets in Canada via Rogers media, but the channel doesn’t offer the exact same content as the streaming service in the USA.
This will be the same in the UK, it means fans will need to purchase Sky Sports first, before the WWE Network channel. It also means we won’t be treated to all of the great content the USA fans receive.
Fans already know ways to work around the system and ensure they receive the US version of the Network, but it would have been more ideal to release the Network outright for UK fans.
Sky should expect more backlash from the UK WWE fans who have been waiting an eternity for the WWE Network, and it would be upsetting to finally get a watered down version instead.
With the WWE touring Europe, it will be interesting to see how the UK fans react; if Sky are to blame then the fans will sympathise with the WWE.
UK WWE fans – what do you make of the rumours surrounding a WWE Network channel on Sky? Let us know your thoughts in the comments section below.