Sunday, June 22, 2014

The One Ring to Rule Them All....

In the last column, I praised TNA's 6 Sided Ring staple during their 7 year usage tenure. I make no apologies for my preference, but something caught my eye today in the news.

Austin Aries and EC3 are now speaking out against the possible change as it relates to the fans' choice in the matter. According to tweets by both men, the ring poses physical dangers to the performers. To this, I have a question.....why has this news NEVER come up in the 7 year use of the ring to begin with? Was this simply a choice made by Jarrett and company that gave no other options to the wrestlers but to do with it what they were able? If this truly posed a legitimate danger to the talents, you can bet the plug would have been pulled LONG before 7 years.

Fact is, it wasn't until the Hogan regime swooped in that the 6 Sides were put to rest in favor of the traditional ring. That said, HIS reason, according to NUMEROUS interviews had to do with it looking juvenile and his not so humble opinion, I might add.

Lockdown's Six Sides of Steel format put TNA into a league all their own, paving the way for themed PPVs across the boundaries in WWE as well. People can say what they want, but TNA started it all in the modern era. In any case, the tenure doesn't matter. The format doesn't matter. What DOES matter is whether or not we're looking at a deal breaker from a wrestler's perspective IF TNA reverts back to the old ring.

To coincide with the possible return of the ring, TNA has been putting out return announcements ALL OVER the place in the past few days. First, it was Tommy Dreamer and Matt Hardy, then it was The Great Muta, Low-Ki and Rhino and now, Brian Cage, and Homicide are on tap for returns as of Destination X. With the volume of returns being prepared to put into play, it stands to question how legitimate these complaints actually are. Is the potential for injury actually a real possibility or are we dealing with the alarmist kayfabe controversy?

Truthfully, I don't know, but I DO know that I had yet to hear anything but praise for the look and the innovation of the ring in its introduction to the promotion in the formative years, and even leading into 2009, when the talk was swirling to do away with it, Jeff Jarrett was the most vocal opponent, but once the decision was made, it took something of a minor miracle to bring about even the POSSIBILITY of its return. But now, assuming fans follow suit to vote and TNA sees fit to pull the trigger, we may see the return of the ring regardless of kayfabe or reality.

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