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MLW opts out of DAZN deal, Azteca Underground update


A year after signing a U.S. streaming deal with sports streaming service DAZN, MLW has opted out in lieu of working on a new contract.

Dave Meltzer reported the news in this week's Wrestling Observer Newsletter.

MLW will continue to shop their U.S. streaming and library rights as they continue to slowly pull content off their YouTube channel. It's unknown how this affects MLW's international contracts with DAZN as this deal was just for the U.S. market.

The original deal called for MLW Fusion to be both part of DAZN's regular weekly schedule and on demand in addition to future live shows, the latter of which never materialized due to the pandemic.

"DAZN was decimated financially by spending so much on name boxers like Canelo Alvarez and Gennady Golovkin and some of their key players behind-the-scenes have left for WWE through Nick Khan. Their budgets got frozen once the Alvarez deal went south and it became a legal situation and the original ownership lost so much they didn’t want to fund more losses," Meltzer wrote.

MLW will continue to air on BeIn Sports and Vice TV. The company has been airing Underground episodes from 2003-04 for the last month as they prepare for a TV taping in Philadelphia next month.

Other notes:

  • Meltzer noted that MLW will be taping vignettes and non-match content in Los Angeles starting Friday for Azteca Underground with the goal of looking like Lucha Underground. It's unclear how the Cesar Duran-led group will fit into the MLW landscape storyline-wise (faction, separate promotion, etc.). He said matches for Azteca Underground will be filmed in the fall.
  • Arez has not yet signed a deal with MLW, but expects to when he comes to Philadelphia for the TV taping.
  • Aramis said he signed a three-year deal.