The news every TNA Wrestling fan has been waiting for has finally come. TNA has officially signed a new television deal. TNA has been in talks with various networks over the last few months. The problem was, no one knew when or if TNA would get a deal done. Now it appears they have with Discovery Comminication’s Destination America. The press release from Discovery just came out announcing the deal, stating…
“DISCOVERY COMMUNICATIONS ACQUIRES EXCLUSIVE BROADCAST RIGHTS TO TOP PROFESSIONAL WRESTLING LEAGUE, TNA IMPACT WRESTLING, FOR DESTINATION AMERICA
(Silver Spring, Md.) – Discovery Communications announced today that it has signed a multi-year deal with TNA (Total Nonstop Action) IMPACT WRESTLING to bring the popular league to homes nationwide on Destination America, the only network dedicated to celebrating the people, places and stories of the United States. Destination America officially enters the ring with its first world premiere of IMPACT WRESTLING in January 2015. The series features some of the biggest names in professional wrestling, including Jeff Hardy, Bobby Roode, Kurt Angle, Bobby Lashley and Gail Kim. The partnership includes the U.S. premieres of additional TNA WRESTLING series and specials and provides Discovery Communications with international broadcasting rights in select regions, to be announced at a later date.
“Our partnership in this uniquely entertaining franchise with TNA IMPACT WRESTLING provides a significant addition to Destination America’s programming strategy,” said Henry Schleiff, Group President of Destination America, Investigation Discovery, American Heroes Channel, Discovery Fit & Health and Discovery Family Channel. “The enduring, cross-generational enthusiasm of pro wrestling is felt by millions of fans around the country, from coast-to-coast and throughout the heartland. We are delighted to bring this beloved American pastime to the one and only network dedicated to celebrating the unique spirit of the U.S., Destination America.”
“Our knockout partnership with TNA IMPACT WRESTLING continues Destination America’s mission of bringing our viewers the best of all-American entertainment, and going center ring with one of the world’s foremost professional wrestling leagues fits perfectly within our DNA,” said Marc Etkind, general manager of Destination America. “Wrestling has created a fiercely loyal, passionate and widespread fan base, and we look forward to being part of the TNA family.”
“We are very excited about Destination America being the new network for IMPACT WRESTLING and the partnership with Discovery Communications both domestically and across the globe. Their commitment to promote and grow our brand in innovative and compelling ways was instrumental in knowing we had found the right home,” said TNA President Dixie Carter. “Together we will create an experience that takes our fans on a new journey that will push the envelope of technology, including where we take our cameras, going deeper into our superstars’ lives and showing the reality of what it takes to create a weekly professional wrestling show, all while showcasing the very best male and female athletes in the world.”
Since launching in 2012, Destination America has become one of cable’s top five fastest-growing networks*, earning 10 consecutive quarters of year-over-year growth in Prime among P2+. With top series that explore unique American cultures and ways of life – including Mountain Monsters, A Haunting, Hillbilly Blood, Buying the Bayou, Buying Alaska, Ghost Asylum and BBQ Pitmasters – Destination America’s programming spans the nation from Alaska, Hawaii and Colorado to Louisiana, West Virginia and communities in between. To find Destination America, the new home of TNA’s IMPACT WRESTLING, go to destinationamerica.com/watchda.
TNA is a privately held sports entertainment company based in Nashville, Tenn., specializing in TV properties, events, merchandise, music, and the management and promotion of professional wrestlers. TNA annually delivers more than 500 hours of original content to millions of fans around the world.”
TNA has been with Spike TV for the better part of a decade, but due to low ratings and Spike wanting to move away from the pro-wrestling business, TNA was left without an American televised home in 2015. Now that Destination America has it, it is expected that TNA will be around for a little while longer. The deal is set for at least two years, which means that regardless of who is on the show, TNA will be televised until 2018.
It comes as no surprise to many that TNA ended up with Destination America. TNA had been in talks with Discovery regarding a TV deal with Velocity, another Discovery property. Apparently TNA and Discovery felt that Destination America would be the better home for them. What makes many wonder is that Destination America is mainly landscape type of network that goes all over the country with various stories on the nation itself. The network doesn’t seem to fit regardless of how Discovery is trying to play it off.
While the network is a fantastic idea that fits the Discovery name, it doesn’t work for Pro-Wrestling.
What is good for TNA however is that they will be the top show on the network immediately. On top of this, due to Discovery having various openings on their networks, there is a chance we will see other content from TNA within the family of networks owned by Discovery. On top of this, the promotion Discovery can offer is far better than Spike TV’s reach across the country.
Discovery owns channels such as Science, TLC, ID and of course the Discovery Channel. Their popular networks are in millions of homes. Velocity and Destination America are some of their newer stations, but there is a good chance Discovery can get them in more homes with TNA present. That said, TNA is expected to help the growth of Destination America. As the press release states, the network has grown and will most likely continue to grow with TNA present.
While many Americans will scoff at the move and find it as a desperate attempt to stay televised, this deal could help TNA long-term. Who knows where this will take them? America will be watching come January of 2015. Let us hope TNA gives us content that is worthy of our attention this time around.
[IMG Credits: ImpactWrestling.com, Fansided]