INDUCTION: The NEW Monday Night Wars: 2010 Gooker Award Winner

35 Submitted by on Mon, 28 July 2014, 04:30

TNA, 2010
Text by RD Reynolds

Well, TNA, congratulations. Dixie Carter, come on up and claim your prize. It took eight years to finally snag it, but you did it.

The Gooker is finally yours.

In a lot of ways, this day was inevitable. I mean, for how many years have folks been lambasting this company for putting on horrible shows, nonsensical angles, and flat out wasting everyone’s time? They’ve given us barbed wire Christmas trees, fights in fish markets, baffling love triangles, and and Pac-Man Jones: Pro Wrestler.

Looking at that list, it somehow seems wrong that they finally broke through to the Gooker by way of trying to reinvigorate the business.

But as I write that, I want you to know that I am not arguing with your decision, fellow Crappers. In a lot of ways, I look at it the same as the infamous InVasion angle of 2001 – this was a chance for wrestling to come alive, to make us fall in love with it all over again.

And just like the InVasion, it fell flat on its big, ugly, stupid face.

Sigh.

It all started out promising enough. The Carters had decided to go for broke and started bringing in big name talent. Hogan. Flair. Hardy. Van Dam. Knobbs.

Wait, what?

Yes, not only was TNA going out and getting the biggest current names they could find (Mr. Kennedy), they were picking up those who were big names fifteen years ago (Scott Hall); those who were kinda big names ten years ago (Val Venis); those who were really never big names (Orlando Jordan); and finally, those who were never in wrestling at all but were pals with Hulk Hogan (Bubba the Love Sponge).

And yes, we got both Brian Knobbs and Jerry Saggs showing up as well.

Apparently, this is how TNA thought they would not only wage war with WWE, but how they would win said war. While I could rant and rave about the stupidity of such a plan, let’s instead take a look at the highlights of each week in the war. We’ll do so by giving a breakdown of what TNA presented, how WWE countered, the ratings, and finally and most importantly, Dixie Carter’s reaction.

Please note I am NOT going to go through every week in step by step detail. If I did, I’d be writing this induction until 2047. And I’d go completely insane over those next 36 years. I wouldn’t want that, and I’d like to think you wouldn’t want that either.

Without any further adieu…

WEEK ONE
JANUARY 4

Week one of the war was basically TNA’s warning shot to WWE, a one-off program to see how they’d do in the timeslot against their much larger and more well-known foe. Spike had promised the company that if they did well, they could get a live Monday night time slot moving forward, so they threw everything they possibly could against the wall to keep their viewership.

And thus, in the span of three hours, they either debuted or brought back the following wrestlers: Ric Flair, Val Venis, Sean Waltman, the Nasty Boys, Jeff Hardy, Orlando Jordan, and yes, Bubba the Love Sponge.

In fact, Bubba was the absolute first new name they showcased, as he was going to be the new backstage interviewer, and he hit the ground running by interviewing, yes, you guessed it…

GEEKY FANS DRESSED UP AS THE HULKSTER!

You want a war, Vince?

YOU GOT IT!

We then got action…X-Division action. Now that stuff, that stuff I love.

Too bad it took place in what appeared to be the world’s largest red bird cage, which made it impossible to see what was even happening in the ring.

Remember the big blue monstrosities the WWF used to use for cage matches?

This was just like that, but red.

And with approximately 47,283 more bars to block your view.

Which didn’t really matter, as the match ended in a DQ.

Yes, in a cage match.

And then Homicide, who apparently thought that you could win the match by climbing through a hole in the roof (I believe this was the case?), got stuck on the top of the cage.

Yes, quite a war this is!

Plus we got Sting…in the RAFTERS!

Hey, remember when that was a big hit for WCW back in 1997?

You know, THIRTEEN YEARS AGO?

Let’s see, what else…Scott Hall’s very greasy grandfather appeared…

…and Jeff Hardy gave out self-portraits to the only three kids who seemed happy to see him.

There was some other stuff on the show too, but really, do you need more information than this?

All the while, Dixie looked on very pleased.

And how did WWE counter?

With a guy named “Bret Hart.”

Who hadn’t been on WWE television in 12 years.

Since, you know, Montreal.

And the result? Impact pulled a 1.5 rating, their best rating ever. Sure, they got pummeled by Raw’s 3.6, but it was an encouraging start, one strong enough to convince Spike to give them that weekly Monday night show.

Indeed, come March 8, the war was to be well and truly back on.


WEEK TWO
March 8

And so we fast forward about two months and we get…

Rob Van Dam making his debut, pinning Sting in seconds.

And then being pummeled for no joke, ten minutes straight.

You’d think that would set up a RVD-Sting feud, but instead Hulk Hogan got in the ring and I think they were building to Hogan vs. Sting.

Because, you know, that worked back in 1997!

And speaking of Hogan, we got him in the main event of the evening, taking on Ric Flair for the first time in many, many years.

And it was really sad.

It was sad to watch these two incredible legends, two men that meant more to the business than all but a handful of people ever had, moving about in slow motion and bleeding like stuck pigs.

All the while, Dixie looked on very pleased.

And how did WWE counter?

Cris Angel doing magic tricks with Santino Marella.

So yeah, if Vince was concerned back in January, he didn’t appear to be now.

But should he have been?

No, not really. Final tally of the first official night of the new wars saw Raw with a 3.4 andImpact with a 0.98.

Well, there’s always next week, right?


WEEK THREE
March 15

Why yes there is next week, and here it is! I bet TNA has figured out that if they put on some ***** action, people will tune in in droves!

And…then again, maybe not, as we get Scott Hall in a sweatshirt he HAD to have gotten at Goodwill. Just that shirt would have been ghetto enough, but that he had the bright idea to scribble “WOLF PAC” on it with a Sharpie almost has me speechless.

Oh, and just in case you’re wondering, he’s out there for a “Five-Minute Challenge” with Kevin Nash.

That lasts about two minutes.

Not that I’m complaining!

But I will complain about this: the seemingly never-ending storyline of Abyss and the MAGIC RING!

What? Don’t remember this spectacular storyline? Then let me try to explain it to you1

See, Hulk Hogan and Abyss were pals, and the Hulkster thought so much of him that he gave his masked pal his WWE Hall of Fame ring. Pretty cool, right?

Well, get this: this ring had MAGICAL POWERS, and it turned Abyss INTO Hulk Hogan!

You know, as slow as that guy was moving last week, I think I’d want to flush that thing down the Crapper.

I could go on for a long time about this angle, but suffice to say it was quite horrible and will be inducted at a future date.

Oh, and yes, all the while, Dixie looked on very pleased.

Or upset.

I’m not sure, her expression never seems to change.

It’s like she just has one expression ever on her face, and honestly, I’m somewhat perplexed as to what it is.

 

So anyway, how did WWE tackle such a mammoth show?

With the return of “Stone Cold” Steve Austin.

I hate to be a Debbie Downer, but I’m not liking Impact’s chances this week.

 

Nor should I have. Scoreboard reads: Raw 3.7, Impact 0.8.

Hey, those TNA numbers are going down. That’s no good!


WEEK FOUR
March 22

So with things falling off a cliff, I bet the crew down in Orlando came up with a humdinger of an opening segment to grab viewers by the short and curlies.

Well, we got Eric Bischoff playing an accoustic guitar.

Does that count?

And just in case you hadn’t figured out that Ric Flair was old, he showed up in a wheel chair.

You know, I’m pretty certain they’ve given up at this point.

Dixie, though, remained wild-eyed and optimistic.

 

And WWE?

Shawn Michaels in the final build to his final match ever.

That’s just not fair.

Survey says: Raw 3.2, Impact 0.9.

The TNA number is UP! Maybe that Magic Ring angle will do the trick!


WEEK FIVE
March 29

Momentum is key in the wrestling business, and with a 10% upswing in the ratings, no doubt TNA was ready to pounce.

And pounce they did, by lowering Orlando Jordan from the ceiling with what appeared to be toilet paper.

And then he just kinda moseyed to the back with a guy that could not have appeared more queeny.

Look, you want to do a bi-sexual gimmick, that’s fine.

Can you just not do it horribly?

Dixie? Comment?

 

How on earth could WWE counter program Orlando Jordan?

With a Shawn Michaels’ retirement speech?

Eh, maybe no one will buy that it’s a real retirement, since every other retirement in wrestling in the last 20 years has ended in like 2 weeks.

Numbers, please!

Raw 3.7, Impact 0.6.

Egads.


WEEK SIX
April 5

That 0.6 had to have scared TNA. But when the going gets tough, the tough get going (anybody else remember that Saturday Night’s Main Event with that music video?)

It’s a TNA Knockouts LOCK BOX CHALLENGE!

Boxes!

Keys!

Russo!

Oh no you don’t TNA…that thing was way too stupid for me to try to cram it into a tiny square here.

So there’s TWO inductions already we need to do from this stupid “war”.

But fret not, kids: Dixie had a plan to get folks to watch her show, as they did an email blitz telling everyone “8 Reasons to Watch Impact Tonight!”

Sadly, she sent this out on a Thursday.

You may recall that Impact was now on Mondays.

That’s right out of the WCW playbook!

Good job, kid!

 

WWE, your response please!

Jack Swagger, World Champion.

Seriously.

It’s like they were thinking, “Eh, if TNA isn’t trying, why should we?”

Numbers, please!

Raw 3.0, Impact 0.85.

UP!!!


WEEK SEVEN
April 12

Isn’t this thing over yet?

In a scene right out of Jeff Cohen’s Championship Wreslting of America (with color commentator “Real Deal” Randy Bear!), Abyss gets run over by a car going 5 miles per hour.

I never thought it was possible, but that was so much better when the Barroom Brawler and Mike Samples did it.

Hey Dixie, did I ever mention that Samples was “The World’s Most Popular Wrestler?”

And I bet you could get him on the cheap!

 

Better get him before Vince does!

What’s this?

David Hasselhoff??!!!

And KITT?!!!

That 3.0 last week must have really scared ‘em!

Numbers, please!

Raw 3.2, Impact 0.79.

If we could have just combined these two shows and had KITT run over Abyss, I bet the combined rating would have been a 14.7!


WEEK EIGHT
April 19

Hang in there, RD…just three more weeks to go!

So Bischoff knew there had to be changes, and he came up with, and I am quoting here, “a revolutionary new ranking system.”

This system consisted of fan voting which they promptly ignored after one week.

Seriously, what is this woman thinking right there?

Someone must tell me.

 

Sigh…I bet it’s going to take an act of God for this war to somehow turn around.

And luckily for TNA, that’s exactly what happened, as a volcanic eruption caused over half the WWE crew to be stranded in Europe!

Vince’s solution to the issue? Have Triple H go out on stage and start Raw with a 20-minute dialogue.

Just like the bad old days!

Eh, whatever, Impact still got creamed in the ratings.


WEEK NINE
April 26

Must…keep…going…

Hey, remember that stupid bit where Abyss got Hogan’s magical ring? In this episode, we got him taking on Ric Flair for HIS ring.

And he won, so I guess he’d get to have all the Nature Boy’s special powers now too.

Dixie, you could have had “Macho Warrior” Ric Hogan for a fraction of the price.

Just saying.

 

Steph, whatcha got for us?

The Draft!

Hey, remember when back when you didn’t have everybody on every show and this actually meant something?

Raw 3.06. Told you that it USED to mean something, doesn’t now.

Impact 0.5.

ZERO POINT FIVE.


WEEK TEN
May 3

This is the end…my only friend, the end…

And how exactly did TNA reply to that 0.5?

Why with more Orlando Jordan, of course!

Here he is on his new segment interviewing Rob Terry.

Fascinating.

Not sure, but I am almost positive Dixie is sad here.

I would be too – I bet that O-Zone had potential to really stroke the ratings.

 

Vince, what nail you gonna use for this here coffin?

Zack Ryder?

Man, you are a jerk.

Impact did a 0.8 in its final chance on Monday night.


That was the end of the new Monday Night Wars, and the end of any chance that there will ever be another one.

And when I write the Death of TNA, rest assured, that thought will keep plenty of poison in my pen.

Written by

Yeah, you know...the WrestleCrap guy. Been here since before day 1, I have. You can hang out with me on Facebook. (I'm on there quite a bit) or follow my exploits on Twitter (I'm on there not quite so often). Thanks, and Keep on Crappin'!
35 Responses to "INDUCTION: The NEW Monday Night Wars: 2010 Gooker Award Winner"
  1. BigPoppaNasty says:

    We need a MAGICAL RING induction. That was hands down the worst thing from the New Monday Night War.

  2. BANG!BANG! says:

    I watched every episode of the new “Monday Night War”. Unfortunately for wrestling fans it was more like TNA’s Monday Night Whimper…….. GOD AWFUL!

  3. Mr Flibble says:

    My favourite era in TNA history and probably the only time i’ve ever found TNA truly entertaining. It was hilariously terrible in a WCW 2000 kinda way and i enjoyed every minute of it.

  4. Lee says:

    Jsut one thing at this stage TNA were actually trying, very trying

  5. Chris D says:

    I must say that I am shocked, awed, and slightly nauseated that Orlando Jordan and his caution tape haven’t been inducted yet. This miscarriage of justice needs to be corrected before Gorilla Monsoon or the Shield catch wind of it…

  6. Dyscord says:

    Another thing that probably hurt Impact, besides such RIVETING television?

    Impact was rerun in it’s old timeslot on Thursday. You guys remember one of the best things about the Monday Night Wars? Raw and Nitro were on the same night with the replay being at midnight. Not too many people would stay up and watch the replay, so you had to choose between Raw and Nitro…or switch between them like most of us ended up doing. TNA didn’t have that. Why the hell would people watch Impact on Monday when they can catch the replay on Thursdays?

  7. jt combo says:

    Pretty sure Hogan and his idea of taking TNA on the road this year will be nominated. They are going back to Orlando in November. at least they were still trying in 2010. in 2013 its just one big EPIC FAIL!

    • Evan Waters says:

      Not only are they going back, it’ll be in a smaller stage. So, same half-engaged crowd, even more claustrophobic production. Their new locale doesn’t even have its own showers.

  8. Stephen says:

    Was this induction revived because of the news that Spike will not be renewing TNA? If not, it’s an amazing coincidence. :)

    Better get to work on “The Death of TNA”, RD.

  9. moppy says:

    Aaaand TNA is done. Time to get to work on that ‘death of tna’, RD….And induct the damn magic ring. Nice little full stop now dixieland has closed its doors.

  10. MJ says:

    Spike is going to cancel IMPACT. Farewell, TNA.

    Thanks for reposting this, RD. Even though the end of TNA has been in the works for quite sometime, this still makes me sad.

    Also, just preordered the hardcover version of revised Death Of WCW. I hope you will be starting on the Death of TNA soon.

  11. Casey says:

    The new Monday Night War was doomed from the start for a lot of reasons. Here is one that almost never gets brought up though.

    Between the end of the original Monday Night War and the beginning of the second, something changed the way television was consumed. That something is obviously the DVR. I believe Tivo was on the market before WCW died but it wasn’t in enough homes to make an impact (pardon the word choice). Sure, people with VCRs sometimes would watch one show and record the other but that was never as convenient as setting a season pass
    and that being the end of it.

    Part of the fun of the original war was flipping back and forth to see how the two companies would counter-program against the other. That was cool back then because as wrestling fans we’d never seen anything like it. In 2010 when time shifting shows was becoming all the rage, two similar shows being head-to-head with one another just didn’t matter. Back in the day people used to speculate how the other networks would program against Friends or Seinfeld on Thursday. Now, nobody cares what is programmed against The Big Bang Theory because it is just going to be put on the DVR and watched later if at all.

    I’m not saying that was the biggest reason the idea of a new Monday Night War never took off. TNA being itself also played a huge part. However, even if TNA had been great I don’t think it would have ultimately mattered in the end. So much of how television is being consumed changed that going back to something that worked in the 1990s was doomed to be looked at as quaint.

    • Anonymous says:

      This guy knows what’s up. Awesome analysis of the situation, dude. Every one of these 60 year old dudes running wrestling promotions who think it’s still the Attitude Era need to understand that TV fundamentally operates in a different way than it did back then and the things that made or broke a wrestling show back then simply will not and can not work anymore.

  12. Anon says:

    TNA could go to another channel

    TNA could go to CSPAN.

    They could be on right after that House of Representatives Show.

    What’s this? IT’S GARRET BISCHOFF!

    He’s got the GAVEL!

  13. Hashington says:

    Russo did it again!

    I love how even network executives want nothing to do with that talentless shithead.

    • Anonymous says:

      The wrestling business is run by wrestling people instead of business people. A competent business person can tell that Russo is incompetent and would know to never hire him. But the wrestling business is so hard to make money in that skilled business heads avoid it like the plague, so you end up with people like Dixie Cater running a big name company despite NO business experience or wrestling knowledge whatsoever. And that’s how a guy like Russo can keep finding work.

  14. Anonymous says:

    One of my favorite inductions for one of the biggest piles of wrestlecrap of all time.

    Also, Kane: The Big Red Lantern needs an induction. One of the biggest so-bad-that-it’s-funny storylines in wrestling history.

    And TNA… TNA is really over, isn’t it? And given the state of the industry there’s not going to be a replacement this time, like how everybody tried to start their own fed after the fall of WCW and ECW, is there? Man… I’ve been into wrestling since the 80s boom started and I’ve never seen the future of wrestling look this bleak before. I think we’re heading into what could be the most important transitional period in the history of wrestling. I expect WWE to start buying up any and every indie fed that shows growth potential and turning them into “developmental territories” so they can BE the wrestling business. Things are going to get weird from here on in.

    • Deathedge says:

      To be fair, Global Force Wrestling COULD be the replacement to fill the slot of “#2 promotion in America” should it actually get off the ground. With partnerships with NJPW, AAA, and a few European promotions, things look good… Kind of like when TNA first launched.

      Jeff Jarrett is basically getting something that very few big league wrestling promoters ever got: a second chance. Here’s hoping he actually does something with it and makes GFW the WWE alternative we have been waiting for for years and that he doesn’t repeat the same mistakes that TNA did.

  15. Mortuary Matt says:

    Didn’t Val Venis come out and only cut one promo on TNA and then was gone forever? Seriously though, the Nasty Boys were intense during their TNA tenure. I can see a Brutus Beefcake conversation with Hogan: “You sure you got nothing for me in the Impact Zone?” “I’m tryin brotha, just gotta get through to Dixie dude!”

    • patricko says:

      I know I’m in a minority, but always used to hate seeing guys like the Nasty Boys on my TV. Missing teeth, the atomic arm pit sniff, it was like they couldn’t decide whether to be legit badasses, or cartoon characters of legit badasses. And upon their return in TNA, just the act of waking to and entering the ring, had whichever was the blonde one sucking wind like he had just run up a mountain….

      The thing that stood out most for me when hogan / bischoff took over, in addition to guys like the NB’s on my TV screen again, was the redesign of the entrace ramp.

      Hogan shows up with his beat up old self, and all the sudden, noone had to climb steps to get in the ring anymore. and the camera cutaway from he and other out of shape old guy’s ring entrances, as they would fumble to get through ropes. They start… camera cuts away.. cuts back.. they’re in!

    • STAYMATIC says:

      Val.. Sean Morley came in beat Christopher Daniels and left for Mexico.
      The Nasty Boys beat the Dudleys at the same PPV (i think?) and then got left shortly after. I think the Dudleys got their win back at least.

  16. You mad or nah? says:

    I love TNA (and used to love WWE with a passion), but this was not a good look. Even though there are those who don’t understand how business works, who resent TNA for even existing, and thus, disregard the need for competition to drive companies to be better, this was one of the worst things that ever happened with TNA. Of course, you should try to be more successful, but it’s better to do it at your own game. Also, I don’t buy the whole “WWE rejects” thing because WWE has always had “rejects” from other promotions (or is territory farming a myth? WCW, ECW, ROH?), but when someone decides to join a promotion, make sure they’re actually going to be a good fit, not be a force that adds nothing or takes away. When TNA tried to be more of a standardized wrestling promotion a la WWE, that’s when a lot of people lost interest. Their unique factors – from the ring, to the focus on female wrestlers, to their crazier but fun storylines, to recognizing their adult audience, to their wrestlers’ gimmicks – is what made them a great alternative for those who were tired of WWE. The only good thing that came out of Hogan/Bischoff (really, Bischoff) was the reality-style camera work, as opposed to the stupid style where wrestlers have to pretend there isn’t a camera man right in his/her face while they’re plotting/talking to themselves (-_-;). A lot of people who hate TNA never watched it or only watched something that was stupid/they heard about and then dismissed it. If you’re a pro-wrestling fan who likes adult gimmicks/storylines with fast-paced (high-flying or technical) wrestling, TNA is what you are looking for. Out of everything, the wrestling is what kept me watching.

    I will say, though, that if TNA went out of business, there would be no reason for me to watch American pro-wrestling anymore. At least not what comes in TV. Because, according to fanboys: WWE = wrestling. So, if WWE sucks (don’t tell me it doesn’t, since fanboys complain about it on the daily and I’ve seen it for myself), then so does pro-wrestling (at least mainstream U.S. pro-wrestling). Some of us can’t watch something we complain about on a weekly (or daily) basis. Basically, for those who think TNA is “bush league” and irrelevant, that means that WWE is responsible for the state of pro-wrestling. Therefore, the sorry state pro-wrestling is in is WWE’s fault.

    • Rocko says:

      Uh…no. Also enough with this fanboy shit. What are you 5?

      First of all, just because you saw someone complain about something online doesn’t mean every single person feels that way. Take Cena’s Make A Wish stuff. Something that no one should ever complain about. Yet I see people saying he is evil and he is doing it so we will like him. People complain about everything so saying you see some people complain doesn’t mean anything.

      I’m assuming you view the WWE as being evil because they are successful. You are one of those type of people who hate successful people because you aren’t one. The failures of other pro wrestling companies are solely due to themselves. It’s not WWE’s fault. Oh but they killed the territories. No they didn’t. The WWE evolved. The territories didn’t. WCW didn’t. ECW didn’t. TNA didn’t.

      In terms of professional wrestling, TNA is the bush league. That’s their own fault. TNA was given years of time and patience to improve and they didn’t. Spike invested a lot of money into TNA and got nothing in return. TNA had stagnated. TNA stopped growing. That’s TNA’s fault. I know how business works (I’m a freaking business major after all). TNA didn’t. They lost money. A lot of money. A business has one goal. To make money. TNA failed. The WWE doesn’t need competition from a company like TNA. In order for another company to even get near WWE they at least need to be competent.

      Adult storylines huh? Like what exactly? You want to see stupid bra and panties matches again? Again, are you 5? What exactly did TNA do that was so hardcore or edgy? You want to know where being edgy leads to? Katie Vick. Mark Henry and Sam the transvestite. Mae Young giving birth to a hand. Meat wrestling with a dildo in his pants. Beaver Cleavage. The Ministry of Darkness (which actually was awful as 90% of the time they existed was spent trying to get Undertaker to remember his real name was Mark and that wrestling is fake as you see, Taker had forgotten that wrestling is fake and he thought he really was The Undertaker). Mae Young’s fake boobs. The Kat actually flashing the camera on PPV. Kerwin White. Chopping off pee pees. That’s what happens when you try to be edgy (3 of those were due to Russo, as in the guy who booked TNA for years). It’s a misconception that wrestling needs to be edgy in order to be interesting. You want to know what wrestling needs to be interesting? Feuds based on personal issues. Good promos. Good matches. Not swimsuit competitions. Not cussing every five seconds. Not blood. Not chair shots to the head.

      You do know that WWE also has really good matches and wrestlers right? The Shield lasted for almost a year and every match they had was good to great. That’s just one small example. But nope all they do is has people call each other meanies and have Hornswoggle plastered over every show right?

      You did get one thing right, the TNA hidden camera style was annoying as hell.

      • RD Reynolds says:

        Now kids, we have to all get along here.

        • Rocko says:

          I was very civil at the end. I mean not so much the other parts but you know. I was a wee bit cranky, wasn’t I?

      • Poon says:

        My guess is that ‘adult storylines’ refers to Mr Anderson childishly shouting “asshole” in every promo for a couple of months. Which was even more childish than it sounds since he was only doing it as a way of sticking one to PG WWE, due to the intellectually lazy myth that media maturity is based on the amount of sex, swearing and bloodshed involved and that anything that tries to cater to all audiences must therefore only be targeted at kids (see also Nintendo).

        Even WWE at its absolute dumbest does its best to separate the stupid stuff from the money programs and main event scene. Not always the case with TNA, which turned its beloved X-Division into a total joke with the Nash angle and it still hasn’t recovered completely.

    • Jinx says:

      “A lot of people who hate TNA never watched it or only watched something that was stupid/they heard about and then dismissed it”

      What about the people who watched TNA and gave up on because it was getting ridiculously stupid? I watched TNA for 3yrs and in the beginning I saw them as an alternative, but even then they were far from being credible competition. Now I say that as this was during their FSN days and it was a little cheesy, but there were some genuine good moments. Then they end up on Spike and it’s still enjoyable. Now, fast forward through the years and I suddenly found myself fast-forwarding through almost every episode… there was nothing there that reminded me of why I watched them in the first place. Then Angle showed up, feuded with Joe in his debut program, Put SoCal Val in an ankle for no reason trying to get a match with the man (seriously, when did Val ever have anything to do with Joe?), and then…kills Joe’s undefeated streak. That’s when I saw the beginning of the end…
      I toughed it out for a few more months, but ultimately threw in the towel and I have watched it since.

      But I do find it amusing that you’re saying that the reason wrestling is in the state it is was because of WWE. What? Did WWE put WCW out of business? Was WWE responsible for ECW filed for bankruptcy? Was it WWE’s fault that Dixie Carter bought TNA, hired Russo and ruined something that could have been great? No. It’s not WWE’s fault that TNA is bush-league and irrelevant. Blame Dixie, Hogan, Russo and Bischoff for that. They tried to somehow replicate both ECW and the Attitude Era and they’ve done nothing but fall on their faces. I mean seriously, “let the pigeons fly”? Not even in the Attitude Era (Well…at least in ECW you’d hear the real meaning and not some lame metaphor) would you hear anything that crass. What is a shame is that apparently TNA managed to turn things around, but like just like WCW…it came a bit too late for it to matter.

      Besides, if TNA really does fold it’s not the end of wrestling as we know it (that was 2001 actually). We still have ROH, we’ll have GFW. So just like how I got over and accepted ECW’s demise, you too will accept and get over TNA’s demise. And if you can’t, well then… sorry about your damn luck.

    • Gareth Baldi says:

      I’ve watched TNA ever since it debuted. I watch it in spite of itself, because it still has some great wrestling. I do not hate TNA, it’s certainly far more entertaining right now than WWE. That does not mean I can’t tell when something is ridiculous or stupid. The way TNA handled the new ‘war’ was ridiculous and stupid. The way they’ve handled pretty much every new world heavyweight champion in their history (especially babyface ones) has been beyond asinine. And the way Dixie tried to claim that their move BACK to Thursdays was a great day for them, instead of admission that they were out of their depth, was on par with a politician (or BioWare) for spin that treats its audience as too stupid to know what happened.

      And no, you don’t get to blame WWE for this one. WCW is to blame, it sent itself crashing out of business because of short-sightedness and greed. TNA is made up of many of the same people who are still desperate to live in the shadows of WWE while claiming they’re the future of wrestling by doing the exact same things as WWE, or the exact same things that worked (or not) 15 years ago. Why do you think it is that companies like Ring of Honor can do so well yet TNA, with a much larger budget and more household names, can’t? Because Ring of Honor knows it’s not the WWE, it embraces that it isn’t the WWE. TNA wants so badly to be WWE or WCW that it’s absolutely painful at times.

      This is why TNA is most likely going to go out of business within the next few years, it’s entirely self-inflicted, but by all means just blame the big bad wolf for their problems. Deluding yourself like Bischoff and Carter do instead of looking at what the company itself can do differently is only going to speed up TNA’s decline. This will be your fault, not WWE’s.

  17. Doc 902714 says:

    VINCE, PLEASE DO NOT BUY The TNA VIDEO TAPE LIBRARY!!!

  18. BigPoppaNasty says:

    Can I submit “Vince Russo e-mail puts TNA out of business” for the Gooker right now?

  19. Doc75 says:

    according to the dirt sheets TNA still will be doing episodez til October when their contract with Spike TV expirez. til then Dixie iz frantically looking for a new network becuz neither party could come to an agreement on money. what a shock. how much of that iz believable iz hard to say. but we will see in time.

  20. Gareth Baldi says:

    I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again – just because you want competition in the North American wrestling scene doesn’t mean you should back every company that claims to be said competition. TNA is all out of excuses, they would always claim that the reason they were inferior to WWE was because of a lack of money (despite constant financial backing since the company was formed), not having enough current star names to convince others that TNA was the place to go, not having two hours for Impact, not being on Monday nights, and not traveling enough and filming too many of their shows in Universal Studios. All of these things were either not legitimate limitations to begin with or have since been resolved (very temporarily in the Monday nights case), and guess what? They still can’t draw a dime. They’re making the exact same fed-destroying mistake as Bischoff made with WCW, obsessing over television ratings and not doing a damn thing to make people buy the pay-per-views or want to attend their shows. In fact, they seem to go to great lengths to convince fans that their pay-per-views are a complete waste of money. Almost all of their recent title changes (particularly the world title) have taken place on TV, and the most recent one was literally right after a pay-per-view with no build. At least when WWE’s done that it’s usually been either a direct pay-per-view rematch or someone cashing in Money in the Bank. TNA’s booking is still absolutely risible, they continue to make their quote-unquote originals choke on the biggest occasions and/or turn them heel because nobody in the company knows how to effectively book a face as champion, another bad hangover from the nWo era. They put the TNA belt on Eric Young, who has almost always been a comedy character treated with no respect whatsoever, and just hoped they could retcon him as a decent champion. They actually weren’t doing such a terrible job (mostly because Young has been incredibly underrated and misused by them for years and was finally able to show some talent), then they panicked and put the belt on Lashley just days after a pay-per-view title defence. When you can’t even control the main event scene, how can you be expected to control the rest of the card?

    TNA has a lot of great in-ring workers who still put on great matches IN SPITE of what TNA now stands for. That’s the reason I still watch. However, even that isn’t going to be much of an advantage for the company now that Ring of Honor has started airing more widely and WWE has started taking independent talent more seriously. To me, NXT is closer to what TNA used to be about than TNA is today. Triple H, the biggest WWE suit you could imagine, is a more effective TNA booker than any booker TNA has hired in the last eight years. “That’s sad,” as Mark Madden would say.

  21. Alexandru says:

    Jack Swagger as World Champion.Seriously.It’s like they were thinking, “Eh, if TNA isn’t trying, why should we?” Ouch! Sad but true. I can’t feel bad for TNA as they have no one but themselves to blame (granted Spike TV could’ve helped a bit more, but in the end TNA screwed themselves through awful storylines, putting ex-WWE guys over homegrown talent time and time again, and no marketing.

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