Backstage Notes Regarding Mixed Match Challenge Booking Plans and Facebook Watch Deal
Original Booking Plans Stay In Tact For Mixed Match Challenge Finals
Last night the WWE held their semi-finals for the Mixed Match Challenge tournament, and now Jinder Mahal and Alicia Fox vs. R-Truth and Carmella are set for the finals at WWE TLC.
On the RAW brand, Jinder Mahal and Alicia Fox defeated Bailey and Apollo Crews, who subbed in for Finn Balor due to illness. R-Truth and Carmella defeated The Miz and Asuka to represent Smackdown.
John Pollock is reporting that the names who are competing in the finals were the original booked plan, despite the amount of replacements that occurred during the tournament. Mahal, Fox, R-Truth and Carmella were booked for entertainment value, and likely wouldn’t have had matches at the PPV.
WWE’s deal with Facebook also included a provision that stated the finals would be part of the TLC pay per view.
The second season premiered on September 18th on Facebook Watch and many changes were made due to multiple injuries throughout the tournament.
- Bobby Roode replaced Kevin Owens after Owens suffered a knee injury.
- Jeff Hardy replaced AJ Styles after Styles was unable to compete.
- Ember Moon replaced Alexa Bliss after Bliss suffered a concussion.
- Curt Hawkins replaced Braun Strowman after Strowman suffered an elbow injury.
- Apollo Crews replaced Finn Bálor after Bálor was diagnosed with illness
Facebook reportedly paid a large sum to the WWE for the Mixed Match Challenge programming in season 1. The exact number is not known, but revenues in the media segment for Q1 WWE financials was up 10%, which included content rights fees, as well as licensing fees paid by Facebook for Mixed Match Challenge. The first season garnished 35 million viewers, despite having mixed reviews from a fan prospective.
No word if Facebook will renew it’s partnership with WWE for Season 3.