Wednesday, April 29, 2015

47...

TNA has been hit this year over and over again with unfortunate circumstances; from Eddie Edward's broken ankle to Taz's release to the losses of Velvet Sky, Bully Ray, and most recently, Hector Guerrero.....but the most recent hit could be disastrous unless the newly christened member of TNA's creative team is able to turn this into something profoundly amazing.

Jeff Hardy, in a motocross bike accident, has broken his leg. This puts TNA in yet another uncomfortable situation, having to remove the Tag Titles from the Hardy's just as they did from the Wolves, but without full disclosure, there's little more than speculation that can be done.

To add to the woes, an unnamed talent went to corporate and outright threatened to leave the promotion bound for GFW if his pay was ever late again.

Right now, TNA has 47 active wrestlers on their roster. Of those in that number, few hold the kind of sway with management it would take to have this issue resolved so quickly. It does, however, speak to a new issue in TNA's history......the first time that so many events have been taped in succession without having them aired. What most people skip out on when the issue of TNA's paid talents are concerned is that TNA is taping TONS of footage that won't be aired for some time. This means that first run paydays the network gives won't come into the TNA Treasury account until said footage airs and, in the case of many businesses around the globe, paychecks haven't gone out because they're waiting for money due. So what we have here is a unique problem TNA has never faced before.

WHAT?! Some might say...."What about when they taped months in advance during the reign of Hogan?!" Sure, TNA did tape their Impact broadcasts a month or even two ahead of the airings, but right now, it's not just Impact. They're doing Xplosion ahead, Impact, along with their monthly specials and all the promotional work the talents have been booked for......these things aren't free, people....they cost money. TNA is spending a great deal of money on production costs, most of which is coming out of pocket and from outside investment sources just to keep the doors open. This isn't a failure....far from it. In fact, this is a learning process that Vince McMahon had to deal with in his early days as well. In the early 90's, WWF taped their shows as well and the thing Vince never had to deal with, was the sheer volume of technology at his fingertips and the amount of first run programming today's fans are accustomed to having access to.

YouTube and all the rest of the other vehicles for putting the product on display are in full swing, which means that TNA HAS to stay ahead of the curve and keep people interested until the next broadcast, which means putting together vignettes and behind the scenes footage to be aired on YouTube and their own website. Keep in mind that each talent in said footage may get paid per appearance and each appearance MAY count as a separate appearance from Impact to behind the scenes segment. This kind of stuff adds up. This isn't any excuse because ALL PAYCHECKS SHOULD ARRIVE ON TIME. But this is a problem TNA officials CAN fix, provided they redouble their efforts to remain conservative in their spending on the fringe.

Monday, April 27, 2015

Whose news is Bigger?

Dixie Carter and Jeff Jarrett are squaring off in, quite possibly the worst way....ever. Within the past 48 hours, TNA announced the inclusion of Revolution Pro Wrestling visionary and Smashing Pumpkins frontman Billy Corgan as a member of their creative team. On Jeff Jarrett's GFW side of the fence, they've announced working with former WCW and TNA consultant Eric Bischoff. Whose news is bigger?

FACT: The inclusion of Billy Corgan means the likely returns of a couple of underutilized talents including Jay Bradley. Revolution Pro Wrestling was Corgan's baby; his promotion hand built and it had/ has a following still. In fact, the most current card has the most prominent former TNA alum in a face off for their World Title, AJ Styles.....

What is still managing to haunt TNA, and especially in the past few months has been cashflow. For whatever reason, whether it be faulty record-keeping or simply oversight, paychecks are not making it to certain on TNA's paid staff. This isn't just localized to production or any department, but across the board and even led to the departures of a few talents on the roster, not the least of which was the partner of Josh Matthews, Taz. While Taz was also running a profoundly successful podcast, his TNA paychecks were doing most of the work, but in more recent weeks, he has garnered a massive audience....enough to even rival Colt Cabana.

All of this begs the question of whether it's good business to take on more weight when it seems difficult for TNA to maintain what talent they have, but over the course of the past couple of weeks, paychecks have been coming to catch up. Whether those monies are coming from Panda Energy or from the TNA treasury, I have no clue, I only know that talents from every department are happy to finally be compensated for their efforts.

So what do YOU guys think? Is TNA making the best of what's available to them or is the Corgan move too bold and too soon? My opinion is simple: new minds help bring about new innovations and in Corgan's case, he brings a great perspective to the table. After all, you can't run a successful independant promotion without having at least SOME idea of how to progress a storyline. I say good luck and I wish TNA all the best in this current venture. As for GFW? Meh....you'll see what a mistake this is once you look in your bank account.

Wednesday, April 8, 2015

Press Release.....

It's not very often I get the chance to put something here involving TNA that makes me nearly overwhelmed with pride over being a TNA fan, but Destination America put out a press release that did just that today.

In their release today, they announced that they've had their best first quarter to date and that a huge part of that was the inclusion of TNA Impact Wrestling to their line up. Now I understand Destination America isn't as large as Spike, but already, DA has been a better partner and has lined up more ads for the product on more outlets than Spike ever did, even at TNA's apex on that network.

Keep in mind also that TNA has 3-4 hours of first run programming per week on Destination and is looking at closing in on perhaps airing Xplosion in that number, putting further emphasis on the product. Tack on the fact that ongoing negotiations are in progress with Netflix and you've got a recipe for success now that WWE has all but pulled out of the streaming service in favor of their own network.

Anyone could try and spin this by saying that the numbers are awful, but when you take into consideration that TNA now has the chance to run Impact twice in a week and gain higher numbers of first time viewing or ongoing viewing fans on the weekly, it is huge and the numbers are actually higher than I would have expected. We're talking an average of 75 % of their previous Spike numbers and for a network with right about half the reach. Not bad, if I do say so myself.