After a horrible 2016 for TNA, where the company came scarily close to collapse multiple times, things are looking up under the promotion’s new owners Anthem Sports & Entertainment.
TNA have now begun their week’s worth of television tapings and the show appears to be continuing the solid onscreen product from the end of last year.
Ex-WWE star Hornswoggle appeared off the back of his Total Nonstop Deletion cameo, and Davey Richards made his return to save his American Wolves partner and TNA World Champion Eddie Edwards in last night’s show. But far more interesting was the people backstage.
Pro Wrestling Sheet have revealed Jeff Jarrett has rejoined with TNA as an Executive Consultant, while Dutch Mantell – Zeb Colter in WWE – will come back to the promotion as a Creative Consultant. I’m not entirely sure what being an ‘Executive Consultant’ entails, but Jarrett has said it’s “a great opportunity for myself and GFW.” No word yet on whether he’s talking about his wrestling promotion, or all the gold he’s trying to sell.
You know when you’re doing something right as a wrestling company when WWE start trying to steal your top performers.
Following WWE’s announcement that they’ve signed former TNA star Mark Andrews to compete in their UK Championship tournament, the Wrestling Observer are reporting that WWE is very much interested in Matt and Jeff Hardy.
Both their TNA contracts are expiring next month, and neither have resigned under the new deals they’ve been offered.
This is mainly because TNA want the Hardys to wrestle exclusively for them, but Matt and Jeff’s Broken Hardys gimmick earns them a lot of money on the independent scene. And, as the Observer points out, “WWE does want them and there’s huge merchandising potential for them with the gimmick in WWE. If they were used regularly they’d make a lot more there.”
The problem with Matt and Jeff going to WWE is that they’d have to sacrifice a lot of the creative freedom they’ve been given in TNA and the schedule will be much harder.
The negotiations are in the early stages right now, but Matt is expected to use all of the above to his advantage, angling for more creative influence behind-the-scenes in TNA.
WWE are also reportedly very interested in Kyle O’Reilly, the man who just lost the Ring of Honor title to Adam Cole at this week’s WrestleKingdom 11 show.
Dave Meltzer reports that, “Right now, ROH officials expect Kyle O’Reilly and Ray Rowe to leave for WWE, and that just about everyone else is staying…the belief is Adam Cole will be WWE-bound in May but from a legal standpoint he’s not even allowed to negotiate with them until 5/1.”
Jay Lethal, Bobby Fish, Hangman Page and Christopher Daniels have all resigned with ROH, with Lethal’s being a two-year deal, and Fish rejecting one from WWE.
WrestleKingdom 11 was notable for much more than just who and who isn’t going to WWE. It was main evented by what many are calling one of the greatest matches ever in professional wrestling, with Meltzer awarding it the hallowed 6 star rating. To put that in perspective, Shawn Michaels vs The Undertaker never got more than a 4.75. Go and watch it.
Should the Hardy Boys go back to WWE and why? Make a valiant, last stand against MeekMahan in the comments below.