WWE has been in negotiations to buy TNA Wrestling, and this would be a bad thing for the entire wrestling world.
We’ve already noted reports on the ever so slightly bizarre news that WWE is apparently in negotiations with Dixie Carter to buy TNA Wrestling. In the professional wrestling world, as it stands, it’s hard to believe that this may not be the most bizarre happening in 2016. It is one of the most intriguing stories of the year so far. We could very well end this week with Vince McMahon as the owner of TNA, as Chris Jericho would say “Drink it in Man”.
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Why would Vince want to buy TNA though? Aside from the fact that the tape library could add thousands of hours of content to the WWE Network? The only answer can be that he more than likely wants to do to TNA what he did to WCW back in 2001. Back then we saw Vince show up on Monday Nitro and proclaim to the world that he had bought his competition. He then told us he was going to crush them, which he did via the convoluted Invasion angle that eventually really benefitted nobody.
Now we have basically the same situation, if the deal does end up happening Vince will likely keep a handful of the wrestlers on the TNA roster and discard the rest like the unwanted spoils of war. But if that happens, the entire wrestling world will suffer.
In a time when WWE is already struggling creatively, with Raw ratings consistently below a three million average, would WWE having a monopoly on televised wrestling be a good thing? No is the answer. Vince and WWE/WWF were at their best when they had someone else nipping at their heels. When that happened he was overtaken by the competition and that lead to probably the greatest period in WWE history, The Attitude Era.
Following the Attitude Era came the point when WCW (and ECW) went out of business and for a long time WWE had no serious competition. TNA started up and became a viable alternative for wrestling fans around the world, but has never got anywhere near being serious competition for the WWE juggernaut. Now we have the potential for TNA to be gone, in the current form anyway, and nowhere for the men and women who call it home to reside on a national basis.
The roster members that wouldn’t be kept on by WWE would find themselves solely relying on an already crowded landscape on the indy circuit, and some may very well struggle to find the spots they truly deserve. Whilst many wrestling fans may look down their noses at TNA and the product they produce, without them some of the biggest names in WWE and NXT may very well not exist in their current form.
The likes of AJ Styles, Samoa Joe, Bobby Roode and Austin Aries all did some of their best work in TNA. With TNA gone from the scene, many talents would find it a whole lot harder to reach the top of the mountain. A lot of the talent in TNA also cut their teeth in indy promotions around the world, but Impact Wrestling s their opportunity to perform in-front of a national and international audience on TV. Without that platform, many of them would be lost to fans around the world.
WWE needs competition, whether that’s large or small. The wrestlers need the company to give them an alternative place of work. Fans deserve some kind of big budget alternative to WWE. If Vince McMahon succeeds and manages to purchase TNA, then the wrestling world will be a worse place for it. Here’s hoping that Billy Corgan can find the money to be the one to purchase the company in time for Bound For Glory.