Perhaps the biggest news story of the past week in professional wrestling has been the circumstances surrounding the imminent sale of TNA following years of financial hardships under the watch of Dixie Carter. Well, according to recent reports from Jim Ross on his latest Ross Report Podcast and Wrestlezone.com’s Justin Labar the deal has apparently been finalized.
Just got a text saying #WWE to buy TNA video library & Billy Corgan is going to be new majority owner of TNA that he'll likely rebrand. Wow!
— Justin LaBar (@JustinLaBar) October 5, 2016
According to reports (and from historically reliable sources), the fate of TNA will go down like this:
VINCE McMAHON ACQUIRES TNA VIDEO LIBRARY
WWE has apparently bought TNA’s entire video archive, spanning nearly 15 years from TNA’s inception in 2002 until this year. That’s hundreds of thousands of hours of content for the WWE Network, not to mention materials for such stars as AJ Styles, Samoa Joe, Kurt Angle, Sting, The Dudley Boys, Sting, Christian, and many more. These not only benefit the Network by adding many of their classic matches, but as well as allowing the creation of more inclusive documentaries and DVD sets highlighting these performers’ career. In the instances of such stars as Bobby Roode, Austin Aries and Eric Young, they now have historical footage to showcase the barely mentioned instances of them being former World Champions. Having archival footage also now means more of a likelihood of primarily TNA centric wrestlers getting inducted into the WWE Hall of Fame.
BILLY CORGAN TO BECOME MAJORITY OWNER, COMPANY TO REBRAND
Unlike his WCW acquisition in 2001, Vince is simply buying the tape library, not the company itself. This will open the door for Billy Corgan, already a minority share owner and the company’s President, to step in as the majority owner. Corgan is expected to rebrand the company under a new promotion banner, effectively retiring TNA, similar to how Jim Crockett‘s NWA promotion was repackaged as WCW. Corgan keeps all current talent contracts and can now move beyond the rather checkered past of TNA Wrestling, and instead focus on the positives of late and create a new brand to capitalize on the excitement rather than be constantly held back by the albatross that was TNA’s name. It also keeps open another viable option of independent wrestlers around the world.
For what it’s worth, longtime TNA employee Bob Ryder is refuting these reports on Twitter. Although it should be noted that, while he was a member of WCW’s management, he also denied that WCW was going under and being sold shortly before Vince’s acquisition in 2001.
Guess again "reliable sources". This "scoop" isn't any more true than the "cancelled flights" one was. #TNATNATNA
— Bob Ryder (@brydertna) October 5, 2016
Details are still being finalized and an official announcement is expected any time soon.