Major League Wrestling announced today they have filed an antitrust lawsuit against WWE.
MLW announced the lawsuit in a press release, accusing WWE of pressuring third parties to abandon contracts and prospective relationships with them, citing as an example a potential streaming deal that “would have been transformative for the company”.
In the lawsuit, MLW specifically mentions that a deal with the streaming service Tubi TV, owned by Fox, fell apart when WWE stepped in.
Additionally, the company alleges that in early 2021, when MLW was in talks with Vice TV to air programing, a then-WWE executive warned Vice TV that Vince McMahon was “pissed” about Vice airing MLW programming and that Vice TV should stop working with MLW. A Vice TV executive responded by saying that what they were doing was illegal and an antitrust violation. The executive replied that she could not control McMahon.
“WWE has been wrongfully depriving its competitors of critical opportunities for many years, but its latest conduct has been even more unconscionable," MLW CEO Court Bauer said in the press release. "I think we speak for the rest of the professional wrestling world when we say that this anti-competitive behavior has to stop.”
WWE, in a statement to Wrestlenomics, said MLW's claims have no merit.
"WWE believes these claims have no merit and intends to vigorously defend itself against them,” they said.
MLW aired one special on Vice TV back on October 7, a Fightland event that had Alex Hammerstone defeat Jacob Fatu to win the MLW World Heavyweight title.