The Readers of Bleacher Report,
I hope this article finds you having a great spring. Now on to business, and that is TNA must make changes to succeed. As a wrestling fan I have watched mostly WWE, but have also had my fair share of tries at enjoying what TNA has to offer. But in the land of distended 60 year old bellies, crimson masks (blood), and lack of story-telling I have found it near impossible to stomach anymore TNA. Let' s look at the changes they must make to be a more successful company and maybe one day compete with the WWE.
No "Monday Night Wars"
There is no doubt the Monday Night Wars of the past with WWE(F) and WCW were nothing short of amazing for wrestling fans. With that said, TNA is not in a place to compete right now and unfortunately with Hogan in the backstage affairs he has garnered the feeling that they are ready to compete. Ratings aside, the show itself is just not big enough to compete. The lack of great cameras, great technical crews, and new venues (travelling the country) makes TNA look second rate. I propose that TNA swallows their pride, and then makes a move to a night where no wrestling is on (i.e. Wednesday). By doing this people who are unwilling to miss WWE, will find their way to Spike TV and thus getting the attention TNA needs to grow.
No More "Oldies"
There is a saying that everything gets finer with age, well if we are taking about a nice glass of wine this is true. As it pertains to wrestling, this is not true at all, and it seems TNA has not been able to understand this. The acquisition of Hulk Hogan back at the beginning of the year marked a dark day in TNA. With Hogan came even more old superstars than before. If we are honest with ourselves, we do not want to see Hogan & Abyss V.S. Styles & Flair. We want Styles V.S. Abyss (or Pope), and this is why they do not need these guys. Not to mention these guys persona's are so stale like old bread, they need to be thrown out. We used to love The Outsiders and Razor Ramon, and now I am simply worried he is going to hurt himself, not to mention he always seems to be a drink or two short of severely inebriated. With that said, TNA needs to do away with almost all of the older guys, and allow the younger stars to shine.
Bring In NEW Younger Stars
While many of us were excited to see Shannon Moore, Jeff Hardy and Mr. Anderson added to the roster, this is not what I mean by bring in new, young stars. Let us look at NXT for example, while the show itself sucks, the idea is right. Both WWE and TNA need to bring up young guys. Think about this, could you imagine David Otunga or Skip Sheffield "crossing the line"? Not currently, but if TNA were more serious about giving these guys a chance to shine then they could really beef up their roster with TALENT. I would go out on a limb and say if any of the NXT stars had been offered an opportunity in TNA to shine, many would have taken it. Sure maybe not with WWE contracts on the table, but what I am saying is TNA must give younger guys an opportunity and they too could grab talent like WWE developmental. One example is Rob Terry, he is a great young talent who would have been a WWE jobber or NXT guy. Instead he is now a champion, and TNA needs to get more "Rob Terry's" to better the show.
Stop Trying To Shock Us
Now this point must be taken with a grain of salt. I, like many wrestling fans, am tired of seeing WWE stars busted open the hard way only to have a ref stop the match. But TNA couldn't take advantage of this, no Hogan and Bischoff tried to exploit it too much. No one wanted to see Hogan and Flair slice their heads open, only to crawl all over each other in an attempt to have a decent match. As well, there is no need for The Pope (an amazing talent I may add) to call a girl a "ho" in the middle of the ring and stuff dollar bills down her shirt. TNA needs to play off the edgy side but not raunchy. It would be good for them to be dicey, but not dirty. By being a bit dicey they can keep fans who do not like the PG rating of the WWE without turning off family-oriented viewers. This point falls solely on the writers and the ideas they have for the stars.
Believe In Story Lines: Writers Block
The last installment that TNA needs, to put it over the edge terms of success, is deep story lines. Not "screw job" part four, but real thought provoking story lines that make wrestling fans want to watch. Wrestling is a two-part entertainment and that is wrestling and story telling. TNA has some very talented wrestler, but put them in bad story lines and you will not get anywhere. TNA has become all to accustomed to leaving major flaws or points in a story line out. For instances, Stings heel turn has made little to no sense, because there was not a true explanation. The TNA writers are historical for going to a dry, baron well. It is time for a fresh writing team and a head writer to take TNA's story lines to the next level...I am in no way saying WWE has great stories, hence why this should be a big deal to TNA. It is a point in which they could hit the WWE and do well in. And think, why does TNA feel the need to keep a man who destroyed WCW on their main story-writing staff, Vince Russo is bad for TNA's business!
Finally, we must see that TNA's success is important to the wrestling business as a whole. Even though I may never completely cross the line I want an option to, and I want it to be good for those who watch. Competition breeds success, and therefore, for WWE to be more of a success it needs a competitor that it currently does not have. Just like when I go to pick up a new pair of cleats I want an option between two great products (i.e. Under Armour and Nike). And so when I sit down to watch wrestling, I want the same option. Currently, that option is impossible, but hopefully if TNA can make changes similar to the aforementioned we will have a choice one day soon
As you read through this I hope you found most of it thought provoking, interesting, and ultimately true. Feel free to let your ideas be known, seeing as we are all fans of the sport. Thanks for reading.
Keeping it real,