WWE Hall of Famer Jim Ross has posted a new blog regarding TNA’s issues with
SpikeTV. Here are some highlights:
“TMZ reported Sunday night
that they would be ending their relationship with TNA Impact when their current
rights fee arrangement ends supposedly in October.
Obviously, this is a
blow to TNA but they have a weekly audience of approximately 1M viewers which
will interest some cable networks. The question is can TNA negotiate a deal that
will financially keep them in business in today’s entertainment world with this
WWE got less of a rights fee from NBC/Universal to stay
on the USA Network than many predicted so one could assume another cable entity
might not be willing to pay top dollar for TNA with the current perception that
broadcasters apparently have regarding the genre.
One would assume/hope
TNA finds a new cable home and they move their fan base with them. If not,
Viacom’s Spike Network is in the same position TBS was in when Jim Crockett
Promotions found themselves in financial duress. TBS bought out JCP and WCW
aired on TBS & TNT for years. The question is does Viacom want to own a pro
wrestling franchise to go with their newly acquired MMA franchise
It will be interesting to see how all the involved parties spin
this matter come Monday morning. If WWE’s scheduled financial, conference call
doesn’t go well later this week especially as it relates to the number if
subscribers currently paying for the WWE Network this will be one of the most
news worthy and potentially negative weeks the business has experienced in
years. Hopefully the week will end better than it’s started.
As in any
major development such as this, opportunistic entrepreneurs will circle their
wagons to both fill the programming void at Spike and to potentially create
national, cable TV competition for WWE.
I’m hoping the wrestling fans win
at the end of the day and that there will be competition within the timeless
genre that has apparently come to another crossroads that will necessitate
change which might actually be a good thing.”