It was noted over the weekend that Jeff Jarrett was in talks with a Spike TV official regarding a major return to the network for TNA, but that may not be exactly what happened. As mentioned, Jeff Jarrett, who is now back helping to run TNA Wrestling, met with a Spike TV official. Many took this as Jeff trying to talk about a return to the network that cut them a few years ago for low ratings despite giving them around a decade to improve things.
Sporting News’ Brian Fritz put all of the claims about TNA going back to Spike TV to rest today when he claimed in a series of tweets that things got a bit out of hand regarding a possible return due to the meeting Jarrett had. He spoke with Spike TV officials who told him that the network is not going to bring TNA’s Impact Wrestling show back to the network., this after the report out of Pro Wrestling Sheet mentioned the meeting as a possible discussion for TNA do such.
Pro Wrestling Sheet mentioned that Jarrett met with Spike TV executive Scott Fishman on Sunday before their most recent set of TV tapings, where the outlet claimed that a return was discussed. According to Fritz, Spike TV officials confirm to him that Fishman was there, but for personal reasons and not to talk about any sort of deal for a TNA return to Spike TV.
He would note that Jason Powell’s ProWrestling.net website had been reporting for months that Fishman had been backstage at Impact Wrestling tapings off and on. This means that Jeff Jarrett did not randomly meet up with Scott, but rather he was there for the same reasons he was previously there for, and nothing was really made about it those times, so why would there be a major deal now?
Fishman lives in the central Florida area, which allows him to go to the tapings when he feels like it. The reason this was made into a big deal now is most likely because Jarrett was spotted talking to Scott. If this would not have happened, then no one would be making a big deal out of seeing Fishman in the area or anything of the sort. With TNA taping in Orlando, it makes sense that he could randomly go a taping whenever he felt like it.
A lot of the Spike TV material seems to have moved so quickly mainly due to TNA taking on a new TV deal with Spike over in The UK recently. Many theorized that it made sense to think that if TNA would make a deal with Spike in The UK that they obviously would try to the do the same in America. Naturally, TNA would love to be back on Spike as the money and exposure would be far superior to what they have experienced the last few years.
Sadly, that is not in the cards for TNA, but they certainly would hope that. Fritz mentioned their television deal with Pop TV ends later this year, and they have already gotten on the bad side of the network by not drawing as much as the network had hoped. TNA went from an average of new a 1.0 on Spike, which is around a million people or more watching per week. Now they average around 300,000 Americans watching per week.
This is a loss of over half of their audience, and even lower from their time on Destination America. Destination America was higher on cable packages while Pop TV is actually on lower packages across the country, depending on your provider. However, the fact that Pop TV is seeing less means many fans have given up on TNA, and possibly nothing can bring them back. However, a new ownership and creative team has given people hope. This on top of Jeff Jarrett’s return.
However, they have already had disrespectful interactions with talent and lost major players. Spike TV would be crazy to take them back after so many issues over the years. That said, it’ll be interesting to see how the Pop TV deal plays out. If they get cut from Pop, many wonder if TNA will ever get another TV deal worth something in the United States.
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