Live coverage of the WWE announcement from Las Vegas on January 8, 2014.
9:30 p.m. ET: Michael Cole is out first (tagged as the “Voice of WWE”). Cole talks about WWE having the most dedicated and passionate fan base. He introduces the Chairman and CEO of WWE, Vince McMahon.
9:32 p.m. ET: Out next is Vince McMahon. He introduces a video package highlighting WWE.
9:37 p.m. ET: Back live with Vince McMahon. He asks for a drum roll. McMahon announces the WWE Network and introduces Michelle Wilson (Chief Revenue and Marketing Officer).
9:38 p.m. ET: Wilson talks about WWE’s new content delivery through the WWE Network. She announces it as a 24/7 streaming service, exclusive live content and huge library that can be accessed on a variety of devices. “WWE Network is unlike any other network in history,” added Wilson. Wilson said the WWE audience is willing to pay for premium content and want access to even more programming. She added the audience is twice as likely to purchase this kind of online streaming content. All 12 WWE Pay Per View events, including Wrestlemania, will be part of the streaming service. Every WWE, WCW and ECW Pay Per View events will all be provided. All RAW and Smackdown programming will also be provided with more content to come. Desktop, laptop, WWE App (Android and iOS), XBOX, PS3 and PS4, Roku and more will have access. Canada, UK, Northern Europe and the North Atlantic, Australia, New Zealand, Singapore and Hong Kong are listed as future locations for the launch in late 2014, early 2015.
9:45 p.m. ET: Stephanie McMahon (Chief Brand Officer) is introduced next. Stephanie discusses the content that will be provided on the WWE Network. Live pre-shows and post-shows for RAW and Smackdown will be taking place. NXT is announced as part of the content. A video package runs focusing on NXT. WWE Legends House is also introduced along with a video package. Wrestlemania Rewind is introduced as another new program looking back at big Wrestlemania matches. Back live, Stephanie introduces Shawn Michaels and Triple H.
9:52 p.m. ET: Shawn Michaels and Triple H are out next in DX gear. Shawn Michaels talks about being nervous and how his natural reaction is to take his clothes off. Triple H cuts him off saying this isn’t the best forum, especially at their age. Stephanie cuts them off to introduce another new show, WWE Countdown. DX asks Stephanie to get comfortable so they can give a proper DX hype introduction. WWE Countdown will be voted on by the fans. Back live, DX talks about catchphrases. Triple H asks HBK what his favorite catchphrase is and cuts him off with the, “It doesn’t matter what your favorite catchphrase is.” HBK said his favorite catchphrase is “you’re fired.” Stephanie talks about the introduction of the evil Mr. McMahon character. Triple H adds, “That’s a character?” Triple H introduces The Monday Night Wars (RAW vs. Nitro). Stephanie corrects him saying it is the Monday Night War. Triple H points out the teleprompter has an “s” on it. A video package runs looking at the Monday Night War between WWE and WCW. Back live, “Stone Cold” Steve Austin is introduced.
10:02 p.m. ET: Out next is “Stone Cold” Steve Austin. Austin talks about getting a phone call from Vince McMahon asking him to be part of this announcement. He talks about the talent before him laying the ground work for something like this to be possible. Austin said it’s a better time now to be a WWE fan. He adds that he is looking forward to enjoying it himself and thanks everyone for coming out tonight to be part of this huge announcement.
10:06 p.m. ET: We take one more look at what the WWE Network will provide. The first ever 24/7 streaming service with live and original programming including an on demand video library. All in HD. Access it anywhere you want on all devices including laptops, desktops, gaming consoles, mobile phones and tablets. Every WWE Pay Per View event will be $9.99 per month with a six month commitment with WWE Network. Plus, original programming. The video package concludes, “WWE Network – it’s way over the top.”
10:09 p.m. ET: Perkins Miller, Executive Vice President Digital Media is out next. Miller walks the viewers through how you can create a WWE Network account. Once your account is purchased on one platform, it can be launched on all other media platforms with one click. Miller shows how you can share the content you are watching via social media and how easy it is to navigate/access live or on demand programming. Athlete biographies and access to purchase tickets to live events will also be available while logged in. Miller then reviews the Video On Demand library including replays of television shows like RAW and Smackdown. He talks about the biggest feature being the huge Pay Per View archive. Over 300 events are available. Miller starts struggling with the teleprompter as DX interrupts him making a Michael Bay joke. HBK picks out one of his favorite moments featuring the return of DX on PPV. DX and Perkins pose and then head to the back.
10:20 p.m. ET: President and CEO of MLB Advanced Media, Bob Bowman, is introduced. He talked about working with WWE on this big project and how the company has been at the forefront of digital media. Bowman talks about how the market has changed with distributing content. He talks about MLB Advanced Media streaming over 20,000 live events and how WWE is creating something unique with this network.
10:23 p.m. ET: John Cena is out next. Cena thanks everyone for helping make history tonight. He reveals the WWE Network goes live in 46 days on February 24, 2014 after RAW at 11:05 ET. The first WWE Pay Per View event to be part of the WWE Network is Wrestlemania 30.
10:26 p.m. ET: Michael Cole thanks the media for attending as the stream ends.