With everything going on and the whirlwind set to take place in the course of the next month in preparation for the relaunch or even rebranding of TNA, I can safely say there's sure to be more than a fever pitch of speculation going around as to who's coming back or who's sticking around and making a return at the turn of the calendar year. That said, I see no reason not to do a little speculating ourselves as to who could be making a return or debut in the coming year. SO, without further ado, I say we launch into this thing....
1. AJ Styles....When looking into this the right way, I say we look at the obvious first. Styles left TNA after having taped episodes of Impact long ahead of his departure at the beginning of the year. His contract with NJPW only had a year on it from beginning to end. Granted, he's slated to be penciled into the GFW picture for one PPV, but that's only one commitment and he hasn't made a signature on the dotted line for anyone else as of this post. So why NOT TNA? Rumor has it that officials are drafting a new deal to offer him anyway, why not?
2. Melina.....Back in 2012, this was in negotiations, but a deal couldn't be reached, but today? The situation is JUST a little different and with the relaunch, officials ARE in the market for a couple of new talents and, in particular, a brand new veteran with some street cred to boot. Once again, the rumors floating around that officials either HAVE BEEN or WILL BE making an offer to Ms. Perez in the coming month to join in on the launch.
3. ODB....With everything being equal, ODB is just as much of a fan favorite now as she has ever been, but right now, she's not a part of the roster. In efforts to cut costs, her contract was allowed to run out, but my understanding is that she's still on good terms with the powers that be pulling strings right now, so I don't see why they wouldn't bring her back as well.
4. Kurt Angle....With only a single year, according to him, left in his career, he's most assuredly not going back up north, with the expectation WWE has for him working a full time schedule, not when TNA has given him the option of remaining a part time wrestler position AND a full time on screen personality for the brand. I don't see this changing in the next year and further, if things go well, he may even change his mind and put another year on it for good measure and for the amount of leeway the organization has done to keep him in good health.
5. Matt Morgan....Surprised? No one was more surprised than I that the Blueprint had even an inkling of interest in returning to the ring after his last departure a couple of years back. What I didn't know was that the two parties have been keeping in contact ever since that last day. From my sources, he's been keeping in shape and has been planning a return to the ring for about 6 months. Could that return include a final run towards the World Title in the new year? Who knows?
This is just scratching the surface, people. There are more parties in negotiations than there are seasons in the year, figuratively speaking. For that reason, if for no other, I am HUGELY excited for the coming year. You should be too.