In what seems like weird news, TNA Wrestling could be in trouble when it comes to their Television deal. Currently, they have not signed a new TV deal with Spike TV. The good and bad news is this: TNA realizes that they need a good product that will draw. TNA is drawing around or over 1 million people per week, so they are not having miserable ratings in comparison to other shows on Spike TV. They are one of the network’s top shows despite the roughly 1.0 viewership numbers they see.
The fact that Spike TV needs them is a big deal. They realize no other wrestling product able to be brought in could draw 1 million viewers right now. Due to this, TNA does plan to sign a new TV deal with them near September at the latest. The current deal expires this October.
Some places will have you think that contract renewals happen up to 3 months before the end of the deal, but that is not always so. If a show is impressive, it will bring on a TV deal that will sometimes happen a year in advance. With WWE for example, this year was one of the first times they didn’t sign a deal early.
TNA even signed their last Spike TV deal nearly a year before it expired.
It is said that Spike had interest in bringing back the WWE, but the problem was that Spike could not afford what WWE wanted. TNA is the current #2 in America, they also have good overseas numbers. Although the overseas stuff does not help Spike, the idea that their popularity could grow is helpful. The issue is that the show seems to be getting less and less love. Whether that is due to the loss of TNA originals such as guys like Sting, is uncertain.
The bad news when it comes to Spike and TNA is that, although it seems almost academic that Spike will sign TNA back on, they certainly will not pay them more than their last contract, and could even pay less. TNA is also in financial trouble. The Carter Family that own TNA feel that it’s self-sustaining. Due to this, they clearly do not want to put more money into it. That being said, TNA cannot last on it’s own. This is why Panda Energy’s money has been such a big help to the company over the years.
Spike obviously knows of TNA’s problems. Because of this, Spike will not sign TNA to a long-term contract if they see that TNA could go out of business or have business issues potentially trickling down to the show itself. So Spike will sign TNA, but the length is uncertain. This also hurts TNA itself. The Carters don’t want to put more money into TNA, which means that TNA’s TV Deal is its only source of real income outside of merchandise or live events. The TV Deal is far more than any merch or live event number TNA has shown over the years.
It is not quite the level of a WWE TV Deal, but enough TNA can last a bit on. The issue with it is that TNA cannot afford a lot of the contracts it already has. That being said, more TNA talent will potentially be done with TNA due to the issues they will face financially. That in turn will affect the product.
Everything truly hinges on the TV Deal. Clearly Spike TV does not want to sign a dying company to a long-term deal, but the dying company needs the long-term deal to last longer. So it’s a catch 22 of sorts, and TNA is dealing with a lot when it comes to the TV deal. What comes of it is uncertain. Stay tuned to IQ for more as we know it.
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