Disclaimer: This week I will be talking about Bobby D’s interesting response to Crossfire, I will be talking about how there is nothing wrong with comparing wrestling feds, I will be talking about an interesting tidbit that I forgot to mention in my column last week about the TNA fans “Confidence” in TNA these days and I will be talking about how the turnover on the TNA roster is a good thing.
First Things First
I would like to welcome the British Fist to TNAsylum. I enjoyed their first video, I have subscribed to their Youtube page and will watch them on a weekly basis. Not a fan of the Evolution theme opening but thats the only complaint I have about them.
It’s Amazing How The Choice of Words Inspires So Much Debate
Last week’s column I talked about how people magically started to realize that TNA is now a good show around the same time Austin Aries entered the World Title Picture so I decide to use Aries’ moniker in the title of the column “The Greatest Bandwagon Fans That Ever Lived”. I thought it was catchy and it fit within what I was talking about. Some took umbrage with that title (and subsequent section of the column about it) and made their feelings known in the comment section of my blog last week. Bobby wrote a nicely written column in response and I wrote a response to him in the comment section where again because of my choice of words got into even more debates there. Ironically like I stated then Bobby basically described himself as a “Bandwagon” fan in which he’ll watch whatever fed appeals to him most at a specific time. There is nothing wrong with that and there is nothing wrong with being a drifter either because I defined it as being the same thing but he inadvertantly proved my point.
I have been given the privilege to write a blog about TNA on TNAsylum and my decision was to write about TNA the product as well as point out such BS I have seen on the number of online sites I visited at the time I started writing my blogs (411Mania, Wrestlinginc., PWTorch, Wrestlingnewsworld, Wrestling Observer by way of other sites copying and pasting their stuff and Prowrestling.net) so I decided to use them in my columns. It has worked out very well as doing 3 or 4 topics a week has given me a good sized column. After reading Bobby’s column, I took a trip down memory lane and looked at most of my previous columns and that is exactly what I see in those columns. I talk about the TNA product, I talk about IWC BS in regards to TNA and I compare TNA to ROH or WWE (which I will be talking about in the next section of this week’s column). So unlike what some people stated in Bobby’s column, I don’t sit around talking squarely about WWE and WWE (same thing goes for ROH) alone on a TNA site; rather I talk about WWE/ROH and how it compares to TNA. Whether it’s the on-screen product or how the internet and dirtsheet columnists respond to what WWE and ROH does onscreen in a different and more hypocritical manner than what they do when they respond to something TNA does online.
This is The Logic Behind The Jeff Hardy Heel Turn at Bound For Glory 2010 (wrote this in April 2011)
This was another thing that came up in the comment section of Bobby’s column and for whatever reason I wasn’t able to post it there so I figured I would take a few seconds to copy and paste the logic I wrote in the comment section for a previous Crossfire column here so here is the explanation I couldn’t give last week:
Abyss started right after Slammivarsary saying "They" were coming to TNA. At that point, "They" were Hogan, Bischoff and Jarrett. Abyss chokeslamed Jeff Hardy and RVD to hell on the road to Victory Road because neither were a part of the pending faction yet. You see at the start of Abyss's heel turn with the "They are coming" Shtick, his instructions from Hogan and Bischoff was to create chaos so Abyss did just that by Chokeslaming RVD and Hardy (two of TNA’s top babyfaces at the time) off the stage on consecutive Impacts.
When Victory Road came and once again Jeff Hardy failed to beat RVD again so he reached out to Hogan and Bischoff about his greed for becoming champion to be greater than friendship to RVD and in essence "sold in". Hogan and Bischoff accepted and the 3 of them had Abyss "try and kill" RVD on The Whole Fucking Show. Jeff Hardy "defended" his friend with a whole bunch of weak ass punches to Abyss over the course of 7 weeks. One week, Abyss took out Hardy backstage despite us never seeing how he did it and played unconscious in the ring before Shannon Moore saved the day (what a weird ending that was to a show). Eric B. and Hogan in the mean time bent over backwards trying to get Hardy in the title match at Bound for Glory. Once he was in, Hogan and Bischoff ignored Hardy completely to throw people off to Jeff being their guy all along. And the rest is history.
For those wondering this could be found in the Guest Column written by yours truly entitled “Why is TNA a Lightning Rod for Criticism?”
Comparing TNA to Its Closest Competition, What’s Wrong With That?
Maybe it’s just an American thing (as I am aware that TNAsylum has members all over this planet) but Americans compare everything. We compare food products, laundry detergents, restaurants, sporting good stores, sport teams, TV shows, talk-shows (both early morning and late-night shows) and just about everything else you can think of. As long as the product is similar and in direct competition with one another, comparisons will be made. So why is it that comparing TNA with WWE is such an immoral thing? I mean WWE is the biggest fed in the US with TNA behind them as number 2. (a distant number 2 but still the number 2 wrestling fed in the US by a healthy margin) And with the ROH fans screaming that ROH is the 3rd promotion in all of the US (again a distant number 3 but they are the 3rd biggest wrestling fed in the country), why can’t TNA fans compare their product to the promotion that is following them on the totem pole?
I simply don’t understand the reasoning anyone has as to why you can’t compare TNA to WWE/ROH especially on TNAsylum. I get if you’re just talking about WWE/ROH on TNAsylum and that’s it but so long as you tie it to TNA, there should be zero problems with that. (That’s why the Austin Aries ROH DVD was mentioned on the site recently) EVERYTHING I write about WWE/ROH in these columns or even in the comment section tie into something about TNA. So I will continue comparing TNA to its competition located above them (WWE) or the competition located below them (ROH). Again maybe it’s just an American thing but comparisons will happen regardless if you like it or not.
How Did I Not To Bring This Up Last Week?
Last week I talked about the TNA fans “confidence” being high at the moment all because an IWC god became World Champion/Got into the World Title Picture. Some of the responses that were made was about how TNA needed time to rebuild the good-will with the fans which would be understandable if the fans I am talking about didn’t do the exact same thing 3 years ago. TNA 2009 from January to August of that year, do you remember that era? It was all of what the IWC hated about TNA: (regardless of the revisionist history that it was great before Hogan ruined it by showing up). The Main Event picture was the chock full of old guys who couldn’t go anymore, the mid and upper card matches were dominated by older talent/ “WWE rejects” and the X-Division was non-existent. IWC favorites like Sonjay Dutt and Petey Williams were let go and talented workers like Shelley and Sabin were sitting at home not being used. All TNA had going for them really was Beer Money and the Knockout division.
Then came September (which coincidently was a time where Vince Russo booked the shows by himself without anyone else in his ear) and AJ Styles became World Champion and boom all those negative feelings started to disappear. Then came Bound For Glory and AJ Styles beats Sting and positivity reigns supreme. Then we get to November and December and we get Styles, Daniels and Joe as the main event, the MCMG’s in the tag title picture alongside Beer Money, Amazing Red is TNA X-Division champion and Angle vs. Wolfe tore the house down for 2 months. By that time the internet was back on board with TNA full-bore (even if the ratings tanked below a 1.0 at that time), the IWC darlings were being used and poof just like that “TNA was the alternative again”, “TNA is what it used to be again”, “I love what TNA is doing” etc. Within 4 months of pushing “young” talent who all happened to be IWC darlings/favorites/gods, there was nothing but positivity on the internet about TNA.
So why did it take TNA so long to do to build up goodwill this time with the likes of Storm and Roode in the main event when the last time TNA pushed their originals like this the last time goodwill happened immediately? Like I stated last week, Roode and Storm aren't IWC gods so the goodwill didn't come in until an IWC god stepped in. Before a rebuttal of Hogan ruined our confidence hence we needed more time, I can understand needing a bit more time this time around but another 7 months was necessary for the confidence to come back to a TNA product that has been very good for a year now and a TNA product that has put the “young” guys in the spotlight for 11 months now. Again I find the timing very suspicious.
The TNA Roster Needed This Kind of Shake-Up
A few months ago I was working on my final project for college before I finished my education (I graduated in 2011 but as a soon to be CPA accountant I needed a 5th year of college to amass 150 credits) and it was a project where you supposed to talk in-depth about a company (any company). It was required that you talk about the company’s beginnings, its evolution/growth to where it is today, you had to talk about the company’s competition (there are those darn comparisons again), a SWOT analysis of the company and ideas you would have to help improve the company. Since I saw the finish line to school and didn’t want to do a whole lot of research on it, I picked TNA. When I got to the SWOT analysis I was going to talk about the TNA roster. I was going to talk about how everyone had a diverse look to them and wasn’t a cookie cutter roster like WWE’s roster was and then I got stumped as at that point I realized that most of the roster has been with TNA for over 5 years now. I was stumped because I wasn’t sure if that was a strength or a weakness for the company. Now that little back-story is finished, let’s talk about it in depth in the next paragraph.
As hard as it is to believe, there were almost 30 talents on the roster that had spent close to 5 years in at least in a company that has been around for only 10 years. (With many of them exceeding the 5 year number) Thanks to that fact, many talents have feuded with most of the roster already so TNA often times got stuck in repeats. That is why I feel that all the longtime talent leaving in the long run is probably a good thing. Now in the short term I know it hurts people when they see a potential main eventer in Matt Morgan or Alex Shelley leave the company but that’s the thing they are potential main eventers and not present time main eventers who are leaving and hurting the company dearly. (See Edge, Batista, Shawn Michaels, Jeff Hardy, and you can count Triple H and Undertaker as well because they wrestle so infrequently as examples of how much it hurts when a main eventer leaves your fed) It gives TNA the opportunity to sign other people who are fresh faces like Kenny King, Joey Ryan, Chavo Guerrero and whoever is in the Aces and Eights or an opportunity to bring back a talent who has been away for awhile in Sonjay Dutt and others like him perhaps in future weeks.
One of the reasons why Aries and Bully Ray (who is a must to re-sign by the way) have inserted such excitement into TNA the past year or so is due to the fact that they are fresh faces who the stalwarts of the company have never faced before. Look at the possibilities for Aries to face in first time ever matches (in TNA) going forward: Angle, Hardy, Styles, Daniels, Kazarian, Storm, Sting, Anderson, The Pope, Kenny King and that’s off the top of my head. Not to mention we have already seen first time ever matches (in TNA) for Aries the past 3 months already (Bully Ray, Samoa Joe and Robert Roode) Since January 2012, TNA has lost Velvet Sky, Angelina Love, Alex Shelley, Matt Morgan, Scott Steiner all of whom who has spent 5+ years in the company. (There might be other long time talents who have cut ties with the company in 2012 but those names are escaping me at the moment) We know what they lost, but isn't it a bit exciting to think about what they can gain with these open slots now on the roster.
I know people don’t like change (I sure as hell don’t as now I’m going job-hunting in September as opposed to going back to school) but not only is change a necessary evil, sometimes change is a good thing. Getting rid of some longtime TNA workers who arguably has more room to grow in TNA is tough but at the same time getting rid of some longtime TNA workers who arguably have peaked in TNA is a necessary thing.