TNA might be having some issues these days, but don’t tell that to TNA President Dixie Carter. TNA was reported to have lost their Spike TV deal this year. Of course, TNA is still on TV to finish out their contract that expires at the end of October, for now however, they are in a position that they have not been in some time. If they cannot work out a deal with Spike TV, who seems to be finalized on their decision to cancel Impact Wrestling, this could bury TNA in a massive way. Carter stopped by Ring Rust Radio to talk about the Spike deal, here is what she had to say:
“Every two years I go through this. This is just the first public negotiation I’ve ever had. I think social media has really changed this kind of thing. I’m used to every two years negotiating with Spike and negotiating with other networks. This time is absolutely not any different. We’re still talking with them, but there are other people, thank God, that are interested in our product. I want to grow this brand; I want to grow it domestically. I want us to be able to start having the kind of success domestically that we’re having internationally. I’m not going to stop and none of us are going to stop until we get there. I’m real excited to see and I think we’ll know sooner than later what’s going to happen.”
The issue that TNA and Dixie are looking over is that TNA usually gets their TV deal done a year prior to expiration. Usually when a network is not keen on a show, they will wait for a while to see if they want to keep it. Due to wrestling being on every week and not a random “season”, it is tougher to just make a call to keep or not keep a program. Historically, Pro-Wrestling does well on a network like Spike. So the idea to keep them would be easy if the ratings showed up well.
TNA has not been able to show up in this area for their entire Spike TV run. Usually one would imagine TNA would improve in that period of time in the ratings category. Sadly they have stayed in the 1.0’s for their only televised show. This past year alone they have seen lower ratings than usual, meaning Spike’s decision to wait on signing them might have been a good idea.
Dixie claims that she had this negotiations in private every few years and this is the first time they have gone public, but the problem is that usually they were done in a year prior to the expiration of the current contract. Naturally the TV deal material would be public at this point when the current deal is about to end and no other one has been signed.
It is said that Spike TV did offer a deal at one point, but it was too low for TNA to accept which is why they “negotiated.” The issue when it comes to TNA is that they do not have room to claim that they deserve the same as their last deal, much less more. They also do not have the likes of Sting or Hulk Hogan to use in deals. People such as Jeff Hardy and Kurt Angle might be done with them in 2015, so then what? Networks do not want to sign something on that they do not see as a draw for them. Even with the major names on TNA’s program Impact Wrestling, TNA still has not managed to get to a 2.0 in their history. This is something WWE can do with SmackDown as it’s number two show.
TNA also touts their success overseas. They do have success, even over WWE in some areas like the UK. The reason is due to the cable package people have in these areas as opposed to the US where anyone with Spike TV also has USA Network or SyFy. The ratings systems are also different in other countries, so TNA is not suddenly bringing in millions of people extra that no one saw coming. Their deal with other countries also will not keep them afloat if they lose the USA deal as the deals they made in these areas were so low. I guess TNA was so big that they signed for a small amount right?
It seems that Carter is certainly trying to keep things covered up and going smoothly at least until October. As of now, despite TNA’s claims to the contrary, no major network is interested in them. Years ago, FX was interested in getting wrestling. Sadly since FOX signed on UFC, they are trying to make MMA work for them and trying to do wrestling while doing that would be a lot of work that probably would not want to take on. TNA certainly could not get a big deal with them that they’d want.
Other than Spike TV and FX, no other major network has even sniffed in TNA’s direction as of this writing. With little to bargain with going into 2015, TNA may have a lot of work ahead to show that they belong on TV. Whether Carter is giving us a load of BS or simply telling the truth, the facts are in front of us. TNA has little chance to stay on Spike, and if they do not get this deal, they will be in major trouble.
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