Jeff and Karen Jarrett were wrong, it wasn’t Velvet Sky. James Storm and Robert Roode were wrong, it wasn’t Jeff Hardy. And Hulk Hogan was damn wrong, it wasn’t Ric Flair.
Welcome back to The Wrestling Times. If you’re tweeting, part of the Twitter Universe, then you’ve probably have come across this hash tag, #IWantWrestling. You can thank former WWE Head Creative writer Dave Lagana for rallying fans to let the world know that we want wrestling. In the spirit of #IWantWrestling, I wanted to touch upon a few things that occurred on last night’s episode of TNA Impact!. So let’s discuss Wrestling, I Want!
TNA’s “Night of Reveals” was definitely a surprise for wrestling fans that wanted to be surprised. The news delivered by Mick Foley, revealed as The Network’s representative, is still being talked about.
The Network have notoriously gotten under the skins of Hulk Hogan and Eric Bischoff by undermining their authority. March 8th marked the night Hulk Hogan gained full control over TNA, but The Network set into motion a series of attacks starting with the removal of Immortal’s Jeff Hardy from the TNA World Title picture. Their influence resulted in Sting winning the championship, and the authority to pick and choose his opponents.
From Ric Flair to Ric Flair, Hulk Hogan exhausted all the possible suspects on who could have been “smarting” up The Network. Looks as if Bischoff’s etiquette classes paid off (remember those segments?) because Mick Foley, finally donning a suit, proclaimed to Hogan, Bischoff, and Flair that TNA would no longer be about them, but about wrestling.
TNA’s movement to rebrand its core product to a strictly wrestling program is due in large to WWE’s recent move to take the “wrestling” out of World Wrestling Entertainment. Though TNA will be changing its name to Impact Wrestling, how is it evolving the wrestling business?
Kurt Angle’s mistress (or business associate) was revealed as Chyna. Joan Laurer returned to the wrestling scene with a smile on her face and an abnormally large bust line. (That’s right, she’s no longer a bodybuilder.) As long as she’s no longer on the drugs, it’s great to see her back. But everyone knows that she won’t be the same Chyna from the late 90’s, right?
Bringing in Chyna, though a nice nostalgia for wrestling fans of the Attitude Era, is by no means evolving the wrestling business. TNA, or Impact Wrestling, has to stop relying on names made famous over a decade or two ago. As WWE has finally come to realize, this is a young man’s sport. And though creating new stars is a painful process, it has to be done.
A few years ago, TNA’s Knockouts division was the highest rated segment of the program because no one else was delivering women’s wrestling. The key was introducing the main stream audience to new talents, mostly from the independent circuit. Women like Awesome Kong, Alissa Flash, and Sojo Bolt were a delight to see simply because it hadn’t been done before. Bringing in Tara, Mickie James, and Chyna without adding new faces to the roster does nothing for the business. These ladies could be training the new generation of women wrestlers, instead of coasting on their laurels.
“You’re only as good as your best opponent.”
“Wild Cat” Chris Harris was revealed to be Matt Hardy’s surprise tag team partner for this Sunday at “Sacrifice,” where they will challenge Beer Money Inc. for the TNA World Tag Team Titles.
Bringing in Chris Harris made sense story wise because who better to gain a psychological advantage over Beer Money than James Storm’s former tag team partner? However, Matt Hardy should have shut his “cold-blooded” trap for five minutes to allow Chris Harris, the special attraction to this match, to cut a promo against Storm.
Mick Foley’s first official act as the visible representative of The Network was issue a 25-Man Battle Royal to determine the next No.1 Contender. (Won by Mr. Anderson.) For a promotion that likes to call out WWE on its short comings, they sure do like to copy from them, whether it’s talents or matches.
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