Anthem Is Rebuilding Impact Wrestling From Ground Up With Major Re-Branding And Mass Departures [SPOILERS]

What else is in store for the new Impact Wrestling?
What else is in store for the new Impact Wrestling? Impact Wrestling

The last two months have been an eventful one for the at team Total Nonstop Action Wrestling...or Impact Wrestling, whatever you want to call it. After getting new owners in Anthem Sports and Entertainment in January, many changes have occurred to the 15-year company. The early stages of Anthem’s ownership saw small little changes like new music for some performers and Anthem’s logo on the turnbuckles. The last week, however, has seen massive changes to the company.

The big news was the loss of six performers in a span of a few days. Normally, a mass exodus of this magnitude never happens so quickly so this was a shock to fans. Names like Drew Galloway, Jade, along with Michael and Maria Bennett left the company after their contracts expired. The Bennetts were surprising departures as at their age, you could see them as major players in TNA. Mike Bennett may be one of the most underrated wrestlers today and to see Anthem just let him go makes no sense. Nothing made less sense than the names of the other wrestlers whose contracts were allowed to expire...The Hardys.

Impact Wrestling, for all of its small improvements in the last 18 months, was a tough show to watch. The only thing that kept people coming back were The Hardys, more importantly “Broken” Matt Hardy. The Broken storyline was one of genius and TNA was saved because of it. Through all of TNA’s awful business dealings and nonsensical management, The Hardys kept the lights on... and Anthem couldn't wait to let Matt and Jeff go.

TNA loses its tag team champions and its biggest characters on the roster. So what does Anthem do to make up for The Hardys’ departure? They bring in Alberto Del Rio (Alberto El Patron is his new name) to no doubt a big money deal. So let’s recap: Anthem let six very good wrestlers and performers go and, in their place, brings in an overpaid wrestler from the WWE, who has had personal issues and burned many bridges in his wake. Sounds like old school TNA to me.

And speaking of old school TNA, a new beginning means new faces in charge. Gone are the days of Dixie Carter and John Gaburick not knowing what they doing and running the company into the ground. When Anthem took over, it was assumed that new blood would be brought in behind the scenes in regards to writing and the booking of the show. Instead, Anthem brought in the old guard of TNA’s past in Jeff Jarrett, Dutch Mantell and Scott D'Amore. These three men oversaw TNA when the company had some success, but that was years ago. Jarrett attempted to start his own wrestling promotion, Global Force Wrestling, and instead started a gold selling pyramid scheme through his company since it is a failure.

With the return of Jarrett as the head of creative, that could mean a possible reappearance of one Vince Russo to the company. Jarrett and Russo are friends, which may mean a return to Russo’s ridiculous writing and nonsense shows with no point. “Let’s Make TNA Again” is what Jarrett wants to market to fans, but in order to make TNA successful, old names needed to not return. Anthem is not familiar with the wrestling industry so it makes sense to go back in TNA’s past to talk to some who were with the company when they were somewhat successful, but only as an advisor or consultant. It is silly to put the same people back into power to see if you can create success.

Finally, something that occurred during the last Impact Wrestling tapings could actually be a good sign. Bruce Pritchard, who also worked for the company a few years ago, made it clear that the TNA name was dead and that the company would be using Impact Wrestling as the promotion’s name going forward. This segment will be seen on Thursday’s Impact Wrestling show, but this is a good move for Anthem. The TNA name is so toxic and unrepairable, that no one wants no part of the company. The name of the TNA’s flagship show has been Impact Wrestling for years, but the name of the company should have changed when Mick Foley first announced the name in 2011.

Impact Wrestling has an opportunity to make a new impression on businesses, sponsors, arenas, everything needed to run a wrestling promotion. Dixie Carter and her childlike business acumen is no longer running the company, so now is the time for Anthem to bring Impact Wrestling back to the table to repair the reputation of this company. Impact Wrestling is no longer the number two promotion in the United States. Anthem has work to do to get fans to believe that Impact Wrestling can become an alternative to the WWE.

Change is good, especially in the wrestling industry. Impact Wrestling needed to change and Anthem has come in to transform the company in the way they want it to look. As Anthem Sports and Entertainment owner Leonard Asper explained to the Financial Post about the Impact Wrestling purchase, “I like sports. But I’m not doing this because I’m a wrestling fanatic. It’s a business decision. We want to own content as a company.” They want to make money and they want content to sell. It will be an uphill climb to make Impact Wrestling profitable, but the wrestling world thrives on competition and right now there is none. Here’s hoping Anthem knows what they are doing.

Join the Discussion
Top Stories