Spike TV have offered TNA a two-hour show but the deal is being held up over money. Spike wants a multi-year exclusive commitment from TNA but TNA feels they will be able to build up Impact’s ratings to a steady 1.4 by the summer and then be able to get more money. TNA’s contract with The Wrestling Channel in the UK expires at the end of the year and will not be renewed. They have signed an exclusive contract with another station, rumoured to be Bravo, who also air UFC.
Impact will be moved on the 25th January as there is a two-hour UFC special on at 20:00, followed by the one-hour Pro’s vs. Joe’s at 22:00.
Jeff Jarrett has been talking with Bob Sapp about doing a program with Kurt Angle in a so-called Shoot Fight Cage Match following Angle’s program with Samoa Joe. TNA originally tried to sign Daniel Puder but the deal fell apart over an ’embarrassingly low’ money offer. Sapp recently turned down a $1 million a year WWE contract.
Joe’s MCL sprain was a severe second degree sprain based on his second examination on the 13th December. He is not expected to undergo surgery but will avoid wrestling until Final Resolution. Before he hurt his knee he was said to be black and blue at the tapings as Angle is ‘giving everyone a beating’.
Crazy Angle Story #1 – he filmed his segment on the George Michael Sports Machine show this week, was asked one question and gave a thirty-minute monologue in response.
Crazy Angle Story #2 – he was a presenter at the Video Game Awards that aired on Spike last week, went crazy and tore his shirt off onstage to get attention. Backstage he was telling people he would fight Couture, Ortiz or Lidell in a match in 2007.
Management have been heavily critical of Vince Russo lately for writing too much material for the one-hour Impact shows, which leads to them having to edit everything and rush whatever makes it onto the air. Starting with the tapings on the 11th December Russo and Jim Cornette have been working together in creative meetings after Jarrett and Dutch Mantel brought them together. The two talk and are civil with one another, with Cornette helping to produce interview segments and attending regular meetings. Before the tapings start Mike Tenay hands out Russo’s scripts to everyone in production, with Cornette openly challenging any segments that he appear in when he feels they don’t make any sense. Russo is described as taking the criticism but bottling up his anger at Cornette.
Russo wanted to push Lance Hoyt and chose him for the spot in the Eckstein/Pierzynski baseball angle. The plan is to build towards a match between Hoyt and Dale Torborg on PPV, with the various players in their respective corner.
The line-up for Final Resolution so far is Angle vs. Joe in a 30-minute Iron Man Match, Abyss vs. Christian vs. Sting for the title with Tomko barred from ringside, LAX vs. Team 3D for the tag belts, Styles vs. Rhino and Daniels vs. Lynn vs. Sabin for the X title in what is dubbed “The Past, The Present and The Future”.
A.J. Styles tried working as a heel at a house show in Raleigh on the 15th December but the fans wouldn’t boo him against Brother Runt.
TNA are interested in bringing in Amy Dumas, a.k.a. Lita, but it remains to be seen if and when she wants to sign.
Credit: Wrestling Observer newsletter (click here for subscription information)