It is interesting…is it not? TNA randomly changes gameplans and decides to go crazier than ever. Talent leave, and some are with one foot out of the door. Then you have the storyline direction which may be going as worse as it ever has been for TNA. So it should come as no shock to the TNA faithful that many fans have floated away and that Spike TV has noticed a decline in love for the product.
This has forced a lot of backstage heat on TNA President Dixie Carter. She basically shoved TNA Founder Jeff Jarrett out of the company, and since then a snowball effect has begun. Whether it’s the loss of a big TNA staple in AJ Styles or the loss of a legend in Sting, TNA is clearly not the exciting new company it once was.
Dixie decided she would complain recently about how TNA did not have a presence in New Orleans when the WWE put on their annual WrestleMania show. This was an after the fact problem she brought up. Many think it is strange for her to bring things up like this and yet she did not bother to try and figure out something to help get them in New Orleans for example.
Her mother Janice Carter and a Panda Energy attorney recently visited TNA offices and this came as a surprise to many. Janice is with Panda Energy and now runs the budget for TNA under the Panda Energy banner. She has never handled things in the TNA office, but rather over the phone or Dixie simply came to her. So this is not a good sign according to some.
Another big issue TNA is facing is the fact that they have yet to sign a new TV deal with Spike TV. Spike has shown TNA programming for the last number of years. Their deal will expire this October. Interestingly enough, upon the time TNA’s last deal with Spike was going on, TNA signed a year before it was set to end. So it is a bit weird that they would not sign a new deal.
There are very little interested parties that would take TNA. FOX Sports was a small idea years ago, but that has since gone down….especially seeing how UFC on primetime FOX cannot draw a lot of ratings in.
TNA has a big need in signing on with Spike TV. Without them, they lose a major bit of funding and no one cares about a wrestling company worldwide once it goes off TV. For an American company like TNA to be off of American TV, this is a huge issue.
They also do not have leverage like the WWE does in it’s time of contract deals. WWE is not signed with NBCU anymore, but USA Network is still showing their product because they know the ratings are there and they would love to keep them. WWE averages about a 2.2 for all of their televised shows. RAW alone has been in the 3.0s most of it’s time on TV.
TNA has never seen a 2.0 rating at all, for any show. So should Spike TV really want to sign a program that never really brings anything in anymore? Does TNA even have a bit of leverage here? Most think not. If TNA’s TV deal falls through, heavy heat will be on Dixie Carter even more than she has now. It looks highly likely that this will fall through for TNA. Stars like Kurt Angle have a contract up in September, and he has stated that he is considering a WWE return.
Most think Angle will take the jump to WWE regardless of the outcome of TNA’s TV deal. However, when you see yourself without a place to be seen versus a place that is not going anywhere, any time soon…you take the bird in the hand option. Without TV, TNA does not have a company, simply put. Their contracts are too heavy and their talent makes money due to TV spots. Most could make more on their own on the Indys rather than stay with TNA.
WWE could be in talks with Spike yet again for all we know, and could be there to take the TNA competition down for good. Or Spike is simply keeping options open. We will know by May according to WWE, on where their new TV home will be.
We shall see what TNA plans to do, especially Dixie Carter. My feeling is that Spike is really weighing options on if they should keep them. If they do plan to, look for the TV deal to be less than the previous one. TNA can either take it or leave it, similar to how their talks with recent departing talents have gone, right AJ Styles?