In an interview conducted on Monday Night Mayhem, Eric Bischoff discussed pending TNA topics, including the TNA Knockout Division.
He claims that due to unforseen injuries and contractual issues, the division has been in a slump but that it would pick up soon enough. He even went as far as to give credit to the Knockout division for being the best overall women’s division in the wrestling industry.
I don’t know about Eric but the Knockouts and the overall TNA product started declining when a certain Regime came on to the scene.
TNA Knockout Division
With Gail Kim now in the WWE, Tara (Lisa Marie Varon) was supposed to be the next big thing. But she left the company due to a rejection of a pay increase. Many believe now that she will return to WWE sometime in the near future. Lisa had left WWE because she was unhappy with her position in the company, so she jumped ship to TNA. Where she rapidly became a 3-time TNA Women’s Knockout Champion, surpassing her 2 reigns as WWE Women’s Champion.
With Angelina Love out of action due to a torn bicep, TNA once again looked towards the Beautiful People to bail them out. Madison Rayne won the title at the TNA Lockdown PPV, a month before Lisa was set to leave the company. In her final act in TNA, Tara passed the torch to Madison Rayne in a Career vs. Title match at the Sacrifice PPV. Madison’s push was complete after she successfully defended the title without the assist from The Beautiful People.
The reason why TNA relies so heavily on The Beautiful People is because of their T&A appeal. If you are familiar with their entrance, then you know about TNA’s T&A.
Aside from the BP, TNA has a whole slew of other Knockouts that are underutilized.
Daffney‘s push was aborted after she failed to capture the TNA Knockouts Title in a First Blood match on Impact!. The following Impact! Daffney won one of the four keys to the Lock Box Challenge; and instead of earning another championship match, she was force to strip tease in front of the TNA audience.
Afterwards, as a result of being attacked by Lacey Von Erich, Daffney returned the following week as a face and teamed up with ODB in an unsuccessful attempt to unseat Lacey and Velvet Sky of their TNA Knockouts Tag Team belts.
In a dark match the following week, Daffney was injured against Rosie Lottalove (Miss Betsy) in her tryout match. Daffney was taken to a hospital, where she was diagnosed with a deeply bruised sternum, a severe stinger, and a concussion.
And yet, word has it that TNA may release Daffney. Rosie Lottalove injured her opponent in a tryout match. She should not have been hired. If this was WWE, she would have been released (Mr. Kennedy comes to mind). Daffney is a great in-ring competitor and with a devastating finisher Lobotomy. Nothing against Madison Rayne as the Knockouts Champion, but Daffney should have been given the torch.
Taylor Wilde and Sarita (Sarah Stock) were the first ever TNA Knockouts Tag Team Champions after winning them in an 8-team tournament. And how does TNA treat them? They were forced to drop the titles to Awesome Kong and Hamada as a ploy to pull in ratings for the first ever live Monday Night airing on January 4th.
Sarita, one of the hirer paid Knockouts, is currently working independent in Mexico. While Taylor, the first ever woman to hold both TNA Women’s Knockout and Tag Team Titles, has been scarcely used on TV. The team of Sarita and Wilde returned to Impact! during the final weeks of Tara’s departure from TNA in a series of losses to her. The likely hood of their contracts being resigned, or even wanting to resign is unlikely. It’s believed that both women want to have a go ahead with WWE. The pay will be great, but be prepared to act as performance enhancers if need-be.
Hamada (Ayako Hamada), probably one of TNA’s more overqualified wrestlers, is stuck in limbo. Hamada has a mix of Mexican and Japanese style wrestling from competing and earning championships from several promotions in Mexico and Japan. Hamada debuted strong with a win over Daffney, and later earned a Global Championship match (first time for a woman) against then-champion Eric Young. Hamada lost the match only because Young had his feet on the ropes during the pin. She won the TNA Knockouts Tag Team straps from Taylor Wilde and Sarita on January 4th, in TNA’s attempt to draw in ratings against a returning Bret Hart to WWE. But due to several issues that Awesome Kong, her tag team partner, had with TNA, the titles were vacated. TNA claimed that the titles were stripped because, allegedly, Hamada and Kong failed to defend the titles in 30 days. Even though the team defended the titles just 21 days prior against Madison Rayne and Velvet Sky. Same story applies to her, Hamada’s contract is set to expire and its unlikely that she will stay.
Brief State of TNA Knockout Division
Tara – Released from her contract
Daffney, Hamada, Taylor Wilde, and Sarita – Contracts set to expire and may not be renewed.
Currently, Roxxi Laveaux has once again returned to TNA. Recovering from an injury incurred in a match with Hamada, where her ankle was broken in two places, Roxxi earned a debut victory over Madison Rayne and earned a title shot at Slammiversary VIII. She also earned a victory over the debuting Rosie Lottalove.
Author’s Note: In regards to Eric Bischoff, how exactly is the TNA Knockout Division going to pick up? The Beautiful People cannot carry the division by themselves. They need some opposition. More opposition than Roxxi and Rosie if you want people to continue watching Impact!.