Sunday, January 24, 2016

Pushing Back....

It was on this night that TNA won....in a matter of speaking. The chants were faint, but they were there.....the night AJ Styles entered the Royal Rumble. I thought he would be buried beneath the masses of WWE's elite, but he even managed to get in his licks before being eliminated by a fellow ROH alum, Kevin Steen. In all this, I never mentioned HOW TNA comes out on top in this. Well, TNA can finally move on, with the knowledge that they burned a bridge that they had no business coming to. When the chips fell, AJ Styles was the good guy and the more loyal and now TNA can learn from their mistake and move on.

Yes, they looked like the jealous ex-girlfriend, and yes, it was almost painful to read the press release TNA gave concerning the exchange, but it did give fans the assurance that they did try to mend broken fences.

HOWEVER, what WWE did with their momentum was squandered with a victory that reminded me why I crossed the line the very first time. I'm glad I hadn't been watching in the weeks leading up to the event as I would have been every bit as frustrated with the fringe stuff as I was with the outcome of the Royal Rumble match itself, which could have been great, even going so far as to stick a gigantic middle finger up at all the indy feds an second place finishers who lost their stars to the big man on campus. Austin Aries, Samoa Joe, Kevin Steen, El Generico, Jon Moxley, Finn Balor, and the list goes on of former ROH and TNA alums who could have been shown on camera at the same time with a decent amount of airtime and a chance to shine on one of WWE's biggest stages....but that's not WWE's bag.

TNA's golden boy is now in the hands of the giant. Good for them. Now that that's over, maybe they can move on to how they're going to move forward, away from this matter and into a brighter future....after all, TNA still could win this round. The viewership numbers ARE rising and the stars are getting about as bright as their prospects they're bringing into the fold. And now they can get back to the business of making someone from no one.

Wednesday, January 20, 2016

Exodus, Leviticus.....

Once upon a time, a company arose from the ashes of the defeated adversary of a giant slayer, from the minds of a few men in a fishing boat. Over time, that company grew, a little bit at a time, but as time continued to move forward, seasons began to show weaknesses in the roots and before long, seeds and good fruit alike began to wither and drop from the vine.

I've watched this little company for so long, it's hard to see good talents leave, but every once in a while, a few talents come along and make the sting a bit less invasive. Bully Ray left in the best place in his career, from my perspective. AJ Styles was let go in the worst part of his. Sting left on his own terms and is being honored yet again by a company who can allow that legacy to soar to a higher level. I've heard rumors that the Hardys may be looking back to WWE, which brings their careers back full circle. It's hard not looking back....and that's what makes Kurt Angle someone particularly special on the list of the best of the best.

AJ Styles might be making his inaugural debut with WWE this weekend and I'll be watching that main event looking for it. Styles wasn't given a hero's send off the way he should have been and for that, I respect his decision to move on....and I'll be watching for someone to maybe, just MAYBE do right by him and his....but I have no confidence for the things that WWE is granted from on high. With the poster boy of WWE, John Cena, posting a picture of Styles on his Instagram, it looks as if they're trying to do some bolstering of support to see what they can expect to gain from having his entrance into the Rumble match.

Historically, circumstances don't play out well for those who have made a name from themselves outside of Vince's creative vision. I hope the best for Joe, AJ, and all the rest who have left the ranks of TNA's elite to find their fortunes elsewhere, but I have no faith in the land they find themselves in now.

This column is my way of giving them tribute, knowing full well that in a perfect world outside of Vince's control, these men and women will find opportunities beyond their own imagining....and I hope that for them.

As for TNA? I've been enjoying what I'm seeing and now that we're beginning to see things calm down from the RED ALERT mode they've been living in for the past month or so. POP TV has been good to them and has allowed them to have the kind of freedom they need to grow.

I realize this has been a bit jumbled and even a bit all over the board, but writing this comes on the heels of something unexpected, TNA's come into some money, some real money and they've begun doing more recruiting, which is always a treat for me, as an observer as to whom they pick and from where they do so.