The million dollar question for any real TNA fan is, “Can TNA become the number one wrestling company in the United States?” We’ve all wondered it, we’ve all had discussions with our friends about it, and since June 19th 2002, we have all hoped for it. Slammiversary is the next PPV’s quickly coming our way and with 11 years quickly approaching since TNA got its humble start I’ve been wondering just how far has TNA come, how much closer are we to not only being legitimate competition, but even taking the top spot from WWE….
On June 19th 2002, a little over a year since Vince McMahon bought WCW and killed any national competition there was, a dream was born. Three guys who went fishing were launching the brain child from that fishing trip, NWA TNA Wrestling! The scorned fans from WCW and ECW rejoiced. Jeff Jarrett proclaimed he was not going to allow Vince to be the only wrestling company. He was going to revolutionize the industry, and create legitimate competition from the ground up. Bold words, and an even bolder move from a guy who most fans, and even wrestlers had considered overrated in WCW, and at most was a good mid card guy. How was he going to do any of this? This guy who once lost the IC title to a woman, this guy who reformed the NWO in WCW so he could stroke his own ego and be the leader. How was this guy going to run a wrestling company? How was he going to make competition for the all mighty Vince McMahon? Many speculated this was going to be a vehicle to allow Jarrett to stroke his own ego, to give himself the NWA world title, to make himself the main attraction, and to have everything about himself. Not to many took Double J seriously, Vince certainly didn’t take him seriously. To an extent, in the beginning TNA was the Double J show, there is no denying that he did monopolize a lot of the main event in the early years, but I think we all can agree if it was as bad as most thought it was going to be there’s no way we would still have TNA today.
In eleven years TNA has gone from a member of the NWA with just a weekly ppv show, to a worldwide tv show, airing in 120 countries, a national cable TV deal, over 1 million weekly viewers in the US alone, 4 major ppv events a year, huge over seas tours, live events outside of their tv show, and most recently taking that weekly show on the road with better production values. Theres is no denying TNA has grown leaps and bounds since those humble beginnings. But can it sustain, can it begin to thrive?
To truly reach that next level it takes more than everything TNA has done so far, more than a weekly TV deal, more than a global presence, and more then taking Impact on the road. What is it they need? Simply put, they need a better product than the competition. They need to have a constantly better product than WWE. Take a look at history, WCW and those who ran it and were in the trenches will all say WCW had a better product, and more compelling tv for a good 3 to 4 years before they finally took that top spot from Vince McMahon, and ask Vince or any one involved from the mid to late 90′s and they will tell you that WWE had the better product for upwards a year before they finally took WCW down. So before we can see a TNA takeover we need to see a constantly better product than what WWE is offering and we are going to need to see it for a long time before the changing of the guard starts to happen. Increasing your exposure, and putting forth a constantly better product is where TNA needs to focus heavily. It’s hard but they can’t slip, and they can’t get lazy, now is the time to start working harder than ever before.
What do you think? Is TNA on course? Are we seeing the start of a new wrestling war? Will TNA be able to do everything needed to reach the top spot? You tell me. What do you see, how do you feel?