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READER ALERT: For all the latest wrestling happenings, check out our News & Rumours section.

Court affirms WWF, Viacom deal


It's official. WWF's Raw Is War broadcast is moving from the USA Network to TNN and Sunday Night Heat is on its way to MTV. The Delaware Supreme Court has ratified the ruling of the Delaware's Chancery Court approving a partnership between Viacom Inc. and the World Wrestling Federation.

The USA Networks had claimed that a proposed deal between Viacom and WWF violated USA's contractual rights. USA claimed it exercised a right-of-first refusal when it matched Viacom's offer of $550,000 a week for a four-show series, including "Raw Is War". The Delaware Supreme Court didn't agree.

In the 5-year agreement, Raw Is War will still air from 9 p.m. to 11 p.m. in the United States but the show's new home will be TNN come September 25th. Sunday Night Heat will begin airing on MTV on October 1st. The deal also includes television specials and a one-hour drama series. Viacom has aquired a 3 per cent stake in the WWF as a result of the alliance.

In Canada, WWF pay-per-views will continue to be shown at Viacom's Famous Players theatres and the new partnership also provides for WWF attractions at Viacom's Paramount Park which includes Paramount Canada's Wonderland in Ontario.

"We would like to thank the USA Network for being our home over the past 17 years," said WWF CEO, Linda McMahon, in a press release. "For almost two decades we have contributed to each other's growth and development. However, we are excited about the opportunities our agreement with Viacom provides to strenghten the WWF brand with our fan base, expand our penetration in existing markets, and broaden our reach around the globe."

-- with files from CANOE's wire service.