During a recent appearance on “The Royal Ramble” podcast, WWE Hall of Famer Jeff Jarrett commented on the early days of TNA/Impact Wrestling, the current partnership between AEW and New Japan Pro Wrestling, and more.
You can check out some highlights from the podcast below:
On the AEW/NJPW partnership: “I’ve always been a huge fan of it. It goes back to the ‘80s. My father was part of an event called Superclash that AWA and WCCW – basically the Von Erichs in Texas and us in Tennessee. In TNA, we called it an open-door policy. We had a promotional relationship with New Japan for years and years. We worked with independents, we worked with Mexico, both promotions down there.”
On collaboration in pro wrestling: “The fanbase understands that wrestling goes on all over the globe, and so, I’ve always had that mindset. I certainly didn’t come up with it. Only really in the early ‘90s did it become polarizing. In – we’ll call it the Monday Night Wars – but collaboration has been around forever. And I think it’s very, very healthy.”
On TNA Wrestling’s early years: “The talent that came through there that I was blessed to just have around and be a part of, to grow and nurture: Samoa Joe, AJ Styles, Bobby Roode, Eric Young, I mean, we can go on and on with the list. It was all a lot of fun. Getting the Spike (TV) deal from a growth aspect? Enormous! We did a fast track. We started on Saturday nights for one hour and then we moved to Thursday nights, non-prime as well, and then we went one hour prime and then two hours in prime, all inside a relatively short period of time in the world of Hollywood. The team that we put together, not only on camera but behind the camera, was really, really special. Some of the greatest times of my life.”
On advice for anyone currently considering launching their pro wrestling promotion: “Create your brand and stay true to it. When you look at the landscape, there is a lot of content being produced out there. So what makes you different? What makes you stand out? What makes you connect with your fanbase to say, ‘I need to watch this program for reasons x, y, and z.’”