Today I’m going to do something I haven’t done in the year since I started writing this column, mention TNA. I’m doing this because of the recent breaking news that TNA and Spike have not, as of this time, been able to renew their television deal to keep impact wrestling on the air. Could that mean the end of TNA?
The biggest issue with TNA is that the company doesn’t have nearly the amount of money as WWE. That’s why they hold their TV tapings in the small impact zone, and when the do go on the road, it’s to much smaller arenas than WWE. With that, they don’t make much money when they go on tour. The limited amount of money means that it’s highly unlikely that any of TNA’s performers make close to what WWE superstars do. However, for them, most seem to be fine with that because they are doing what they love, wrestling on a national televised program. Without a TV deal, they lose that exposure, which is critical for keeping the company alive. The more exposure a company has, the bigger the audience will be. Take that away, and the way the company gets promoted to reach a potential audience becomes limited or even non-existent. I believe that if TNA is unable to reach a TV deal, rather it be with Spike TV or another station, they will go out of business. Look at WCW, it has been documented that the lack of a TV was what actually ended WCW, even though they were losing a great deal of money, they could have survived if a television station wanted to air their programming. The same fate could meet TNA.
Now, I watched the latest episode of Impact wrestling, the first time I had watched it in years, because I was curious to see what was going on with the company. Dixie Carter, who many people blame for TNA’s current situation, was drawling “go away” heat from the crowd. The best match of the night featured the Hardy’s, who became households names in WWE, so some of that audience may have watched to see them. Same goes for the most over wrestlers I saw, Bully Ray, Devon, and Tommy Dreamer. Yes, they are top names in TNA, but they are known from other promotions. I didn’t know who some of the wrestlers were, so it was hard for me to be interested in what they were doing. Even their World Heavyweight Champion Bobby Lashley, who apparently goes by just Lashley, is someone who made a name for himself in the WWE before he went to TNA. Based on that, I don’t believe there is a large audience who watches TNA to see their original superstars. That’s not a good sign either.
The bottom line here is, if TNA had WWE or even WCW money, it could survive, but it doesn’t. If TNA had bigger name original superstars, it could survive, but it doesn’t. If TNA had a television deal, it could survive, but right now it doesn’t. What I’m saying is, I believe that if TNA doesn’t get a TV deal worked out before the current one expires, TNA will not survive.
Until next time, go watch TNA, because you may not be able to much longer,