When Fox originally purchased the rights to air SmackDown Live on their network on Friday nights, it was assumed that they did not want to keep their show connected to Monday Night Raw, cementing the brand split.
However, new rumors indicate that has changed due to dropping ratings.
According to the Wrestling Observer, both Fox and USA Network want WWE to end their brand split due to dropping ratings. This could cause some confusion and problems if it happens.
For one thing, if WWE ends their brand split, and Fox is really wanting more athletic competition on their show instead of the more skit-oriented Monday Night Raw, that will make the storytelling awkward carrying from one network to the other.
There is also the fact that WWE will have to likely eliminate one of the world titles, one of the mid-card titles (United States, Intercontinental) and one of the tag team titles.
— WWE (@WWE) May 7, 2019
With fewer belts to fight for and every competitor appearing on both shows, there is also less room for talent.
Names like Luke Harper, The Revival, Sasha Banks, and more, who have been asking for more screentime will get less and that makes it more likely that more superstars that are not in the main event spots will leave WWE when their contracts end to go somewhere with more opportunities.
With AEW starting up this year behind the backing of a billionaire owner, that means that WWE taking TV time away from talented younger stars could help the new company become legitimate competition quicker than anyone expected.
Fox and USA Network seem to believe that having the same big names on both shows will improve ratings. In all honesty, the only way to get ratings back up is by telling better stories and presenting more compelling television — no matter which stars are out there competing.