TNA’s Ineptitude

Hey Scott,

Isn't it kind of fitting that Samoa Joe debuts with WWE on the night the final nail is driven into the coffin of TNA (Meltzer's report that TNA will be cancelled by Destination America)?

It got me thinking about all of the guys they've squandered over the year, but then you look around the business and it's alarming how badly they screwed up passing on certain guys given what other promotions have done with them. Samoa Joe (left TNA in 2015) – Now likely a top guy on NXT.Okada (left TNA in 2011) and A.J Styles (left TNA in 2014) – Both top guys in NJPW. Okada is basically the guy the promotion is going to be built around going into the future, and A.J. is the current IWGP Heavyweight Champion. Ezekiel Jackson (Big Ryck) (brief stop over in TNA in 2014), Brian Cage (brief stops in TNA in 2012 and 2013), and Hernandez (left TNA in 2014) – All three have been top guys at varying points during this first season of Lucha Underground. Jay Lethal (left TNA in 2011), Chris Daniels (left TNA in 2014), Chris Sabin (left TNA in 2014), Frankie Kazarian (left TNA in 2014)- All top guys in ROH. Lethal has been put over huge as the TV Champion, Daniels & Kazarian are the tag champs, and those two are now in a stable that is going to be come a fixture of ROH programming with Sabin. All of these guys are major contributors to promotions that have TV shows in the US Market and are direct competition with TNA:NXT – WWE NetworkNJPW – AXS TV Lucha Underground – El Rey/UnimasROH – Syndication
And all of these guys are guys that apparently TNA didn't see as valuable enough to build their promotion around. 
And now they're likely off the air and possibly out of business because of that. 
Like I said, fitting that Samoa Joe ends the NXT special in a staredown with Kevin Owens as news breaks that TNA has been cancelled. 

​I think Okada was probably the biggest "WTF" one for me, as they had this guy under contract, you know, the guy who WWE is almost literally begging to sign and push, and the best thing they could think of ​was a lame Green Hornet gimmick. 

TNA’s Wrestlemania

Great Muta & Tajiri vs. Great Sanada & James Storm Samoa Joe vs. Low Ki vs. Kaz Hayashi – X title Team 3-D vs. Tommy Dreamer & Abyss Ethan Carter III vs. Ryota Hama MVP vs. Kazma Sakamoto Minoru Tanaka vs. Manik Havok vs. Velvet Sky So I don’t think I’m gonna bother doing a preview column on the Sporting News for this one. 

Sporting News: TNA’s Interesting Times

Figured I should bang this one out ASAP before anything else crazy happens tonight. I imagine I'll need to write something up when the Network numbers are released on Friday as well, but one crisis at a time.  Apologies for any errors in the timelines or major omissions and such, it's late and I wanted to make sure I hit the big points while the iron was hot.

CM Punk: TNA’s Savior?

Apparently, CM Punk's contract with WWE expires next summer. Separately, TNA is looking for a new home base.

Forget for a moment the fact that none of the following will actually happen…what if TNA decided to settle in somewhere in Chicago, and, when Punk's contract expired, Dixie Carter offered Punk carte blanche to run the creative side of the company however he wants? And allow him to bring in anyone he can get?

Would that be enough to make TNA a viable wrestling company?

CM Punk?  The guy who even his friends think is a grumpy asshole with no common sense filter on his mouth?  I don't see him being a very effective booker.  Say what you will about HHH, but he knows how to talk to people.  Punk seems more in the Raven mold, as the super-smart guy with great ideas who needs a Paul Heyman to actually turn them into usable TV.  

Will TNA’s “Clash” shows help or hurt their PPV buys?

Scott,

Hope you are having a wonderful summer weekend. With TNA just having Destination X on free TV and with Hardcore Justice on free TV as well, do you think it will help or hurt TNA's PPV buys? If they are putting "Clash" style shows on free TV for 6-8 months out of the year, why would the casual viewer care to order the PPV's the other 4 months? We got a World title change on free TV at Destination X and probably another one at Hardcore Justice. I just can't see TNA building up a stronger PPV consumer base with them giving away free World title matches on a monthly basis on TV. While I love the free shows, I think it would be better if they used that show as a "medium" to build stronger feuds heading into the PPV's. 

O

h, the 4 PPV model has been a disaster on several levels.  Buyrates didn't go up, and now Dixie Carter is claiming that the cost of taping all the replacement shows in one shot is the reason for their financial woes.  Plus the show has been pretty aimless without monthly PPVs to build towards.  Even if they had cut it down to 8 they would still have direction.  Now they've got the problem with Bound for Glory of building it with a giant tournament where you don't even know who the main contenders are going to be!  April – October is just WAY too long between shows.  That's a huge commitment to ask newer viewers to make.