TNA News: Pop TV Excludes TNA Wrestling From Upfronts Listing, Possibly Dropping TNA Programming?

Joe Burgett

TNA Wrestling has gone through a lot the last number of years. A while back, they were dropped by Spike TV after nearly a decade of time spent on the network. They never drew amazing numbers there, but they were respectable enough to where some thought they could be considered an excellent number two option for pro-wrestling fans. Once they were dropped from Spike TV, the bottom fell out. They ended up on Destination America where they would also be dropped.

TNA is now on Pop TV, and many have wondered if the network will follow what others have done and drop the promotion. They may be getting ready to do that. According to PW Torch, TNA has not been included in Pop TV's upfront listing for 2016-2017. In their Upfronts announcement, Pop spoke highly of their original series Schitt's Creek starring Eugene Levy. They also spoke of other programming in the works they are proud to present to advertisers, which is quite significant.

Right now, networks are putting out lists of shows that they want advertisers to see. The idea with the Upfronts is to promote the major shows on their networks to hopefully draw interest from advertisers, which in turn makes them more money. While this is possibly bigger for the advertisers, it is also big for the people. Excitement and intrigue can come with these announcements, and that can help draw in viewers that may have not paid much attention to the network before.

Pop TV not adding Impact Wrestling to their list is interesting to see. Does that mean TNA will not be on Pop TV by this time next year? That is quite possible. The fact that Pop TV didn't include them means that they certainly do not think highly of the show and feel that a new comedy starring the guy from all the National Lampoon movies will get them more viewers. In a way, it is a slap in the face of TNA, but can they expect better?

TNA has not been bringing in the kind of viewers that Pop TV can see as significant. Since arriving on Pop TV, they have averaged under 500,000 viewers per week with 410,000 total viewers (that's with DVR counts, Dixie). This is a huge problem for Pop TV, as they know they can probably put another show on at the same time, in the same time-slot, and get better views.

Pop TV did not mention the TNA World Title match between Drew Galloway and Bobby Lashley that aired on tonight's Impact Wrestling broadcast. There is also apparently no graphic or even as much as a notice for Impact airing on Tuesday nights on the network. Currently, the Pop TV website is highlighting Schitt's Creek and their New Kids on the Block program. The fact that TNA is being ignored here is not a good sign since it was originally set to be the top show on the network.

TNA's Impact Wrestling program has not been able to work out well since coming to the Pop TV network in January of this year. Part of the problem is that Pop TV's main demographic is female, and PW Torch claims there is 65/35 split between the male and female 18-49 demographic for TNA. With TNA being more guy friendly than girl friendly, there is clearly a bad situation considering Pop TV's core audience does not care about TNA. Most men are also not going to boost up their cable package to watch TNA on Pop TV either.

The fact is, Impact Wrestling simply does not draw enough consistent viewers to appeal to advertisers. This is most likely why Pop TV left them out of the upfront material and possibly why they may end up dropping them before too long, exactly as Spike TV and Destination America have. Pop TV put the TNA replay on Saturday mornings, but the viewership was terrible and this only lasted for a month before Pop TV pulled the plug. TNA was hoping to create another show to put on the network for this time period.

At this point, the theory is that Pop TV has no faith in TNA Wrestling and may soon decide to drop TNA Wrestling from their network. They have the right to do so at any time, similar to Destination America. If they do, it would be the third network TNA has been dropped from in the United States in the last two years.

[Image via Pop TV]