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SLAM! Roundtable: TNA monthly PPVs
By SLAM! Wrestling


Cartoon by Annette Balesteri, our SLAM! Wrestling Editorial Cartoonist


We were also fortunate to have a very hot topic to gather 'round the SLAM! roundtable for debate. As many of you already know, NWA-TNA has shown its last Wednesday night pay-per-view, and will be moving to a more traditional monthly pay-TV offering. Thus, this edition's debate topic was an obvious choice:

SLAM! Speaks Topic #2 - "Is NWA-TNA making the right move by going from weekly to monthly pay-per-views?"

Steven Johnson
As the weekly recap writer for TNA Impact!, I'm not sure the company has a choice. I try to watch Impact! on different Fox Sports Net affiliates each week to get a gauge on advertisers from different markets. It's my impression that there are not a lot out there. Impact! is designed as a loss leader, to be sure, but controlling costs is important, and a single monthly PPV might be a better way to count pennies.

Bob Kapur
I don't think that the change will make much difference. The company has built up a solid core audience that they'll probably retain even after the change. But if they're doing this to grab new viewers, I doubt the strategy will work; the appetite of casual audience is on too much of a downward slope. That doesn't mean I don't like the company -- I think it has great potential. Unfortunately, their good idea comes at the wrong time.

Corey David Lacroix
I don't think TNA has a choice. Mediocre match line-ups won't draw buy rates. How many buyers took a chance on the PPV, only to be completely turned off by that one show where the product was sub par? The promotion is better off to focus on building feuds on the weekly television format, then blow off those sagas on the monthly PPV. Push the wrestlers who deliver consistently in the ring with focused story lines, heavy on the depth of character department.

Chris Sokol
NWA-TNA made the right move switching to a monthly PPV. Having one a week was way too much. Not everybody has the ability to shell out ten bucks a week. Having a weekly PPV hurt buyrates and TV production; it was way too overwhelming for them. It got so overwhelming that each week seemed like one big time-filling brawl; there wasn't really much quality anymore. A monthly PPV will help increase the quality of both TV and PPV and put more emphasis on TV production. Good move.

Jon Waldman
I'm going to go the way of the devil here and give my thumbs down. Aside from the fact that this nearly completely shoves the Canadian market out the window, TNA had a niche in its 10 bucks for two hours market. Now, all it is is a WWE clone, and in the end you're ending up with less time (three hours compared to eight) for your dollar If they want to cut back on costs, TNA just should have done two shows worth of taping at a time - that would have cut their spending pretty much in half.

The Last Word

Jason Clevett

They said it wouldn’t survive, but TNA has lived for 27 months. Now, once again people are calling into question whether or not TNA will survive with monthly pay-per-views.

It boils down to which is the lesser of two evils – losing money on a weekly or monthly basis. Have no doubt that it will lose money; Impact has a horrible timeslot and isn’t seen in a lot of important markets, including the full Canadian market. Much like ECW, TNA will have to rely on people just taking a general interest in seeing the monthly shows. This may result in the dreaded “not having a card and seeing matches thrown together” ECW effect as well.

What this change boils down to is Panda Energy. As long as the Carter family is willing to put their money into TNA, then the promotion will continue to survive. They have the talent to put on exciting matches, although running a show around Dusty Rhodes, Jeff Jarrett and Vince Russo isn’t going to result in people buying shows. As well, unless they can get a prime-time slot that actually lets people with jobs or in school see their show, buyrates will continue to be low, and TNA will struggle to survive.

It’s a step in the right direction, but there is still a long twisting path before TNA is successful.

Now it's your turn. What are your thoughts on the TNA pay-per-view change? Send us your opinions on NWA-TNA's new format. Please be sure to include your full name in your response, and to leave the subject of your e-mail as SlamWrestling, otherwise your e-mail may not be properly received.

-- compiled by JON WALDMAN


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