To Be Determined – The Old-New TNA

Two days ago I had this column all written in my head. I wanted to write about how much I loved the new direction that TNA presented. I wanted to write about how I went back to watching Impact on a regular basis on the road to “Bound For Glory”. I wanted to write about how good BFG was and about how the following Impact felt like TNA is heading in a new direction that puts the younger, better wrestlers in the spotlight. I wanted to write that for the first time in a very long while I was optimistic about the little promotion from Florida.

And then TNA signed Hulk Hogan.

It really looked like TNA was on the right track. They pulled out all stops on the weeks before BFG and the following Impact. They gave away Angle vs. Styles on free TV before BFG. The PPV itself was excellent. Even the graphics for the event looked great, better than anything WWE presented in this department this year. The Impact that followed felt like a “Reset” show, where the slates were wiped and they were starting afresh, and I enjoyed every minute of it, even though I knew that they will not give me Ultimate X or a cage match every week.

And then TNA signed Hulk Hogan.

TNA signed Nigel McGuinness last week. McGuinness failed a WWE physical test and TNA made the best of the opportunity and swooped in and signed the former ROH champion. And once he was signed, TNA made him a star on his first show. To bring in a new wrestler (who wasn’t in WWE) and immediately have him dominate Kurt Angle means that this person is going to be a major player and a top star for the promotion. And McGuinness, newly named Desmond Wolfe, became a star on his first Impact.

And then TNA signed Hulk Hogan.

The card for Turning Point, both official and rumored, looked like a fantasy wrestling card rather than a real one. Styles vs. Joe vs. Daniels in the main event? Angle vs. Wolfe? The British Invasion vs. The Motor City Machineguns? This is like the fans dream come true. When I saw those matches I actually felt a bit sorry that I’ll be in the UK that week and will not be able to see the PPV. The event seemed like it reflects a true turning point (sorry for the bad pun) for the promotion.

And then TNA signed Hulk Hogan.

But now that I think about it, I don’t know why I’m so surprised. This happened time and time again with TNA. Every time that it felt like they were finally doing the right thing, they went and screwed themselves. Every time it felt like they were going to turn Joe into the truly big star he could and should be, they hit the brakes. Every time it felt like they were going to rely on the talent that was sidelined by former WCW or WWE “name wrestlers”, they went and signed Booker T or Kevin Nash. And every time I’d get excited only to get my hopes crushed. And I was really excited this time.

And then TNA signed Hulk Hogan.

Because this time it really felt different. Styles beat Sting clean in the main event of Bound For Glory. We are going to get styles-Joe-Daniels again but this time for the TNA title, despite Joe’s loss to Lashley. Angle’s face turn promo on Impact put the focus on TNA’s younger talent. The MEM was no more and Booker T was gone from the promotion.

And then TNA signed Hulk Hogan.

But the saddest part is that it will happen again. I’ll watch Turning Point because the card is still strong, but it will not be a new TNA. And in a few months I’ll get my hopes up again because it will look like they will turn a new page and give the spotlight to the deserving talent, only get my hopes shattered again. TNA will continue to spit in all of our faces and expect us to think it’s rain.

Just like this time, when TNA signed Hulk Hogan.

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