The Night They Drove Old Dixie Down

Mark Madden

WWE Buys TNAWhen you make all the decisions, you take all the blame.

Let’s see if Dixie Carter is willing to do that.

Impact’s ratings are disappointing, especially given the link with Bellator. (That was never going to work, but Spike TV didn’t know that.) But they’re not bad, especially given the standards of cable TV in general and Spike TV in particular.

So, why does Spike TV want to cut ties with TNA?

Hulk Hogan leaving didn’t help.

Hogan, in retrospect, was a Catch-22 of mythical proportions. He bigfooted TNA’s TV to a sickening degree. Couldn’t work, so he couldn’t justify all that TV time by delivering a payoff. His daughter chumped out on Hogan’s last big angle. Hogan just killed Impact. Made it unwatchable.

Problem is, it’s even more unwatchable now.

Hogan supplied star power. Not on-screen so much, but to aging TV executives who still think HULK HOGAN = wrestling.

Hulk’s not upper-case anymore, except when it comes to LIMPING.

But if Hogan were still with TNA, TNA would have been renewed by Spike TV. No doubt.

Blame is being placed on Vince Russo’s “secret” relationship with TNA. Why does that relationship need to be “secret,” anyway? Are there religious implications? Do the parents object? Did somebody get knocked up? Will TNA need to be sent to a home for wayward girls until the baby is born?

Russo has failed a lot more than he’s succeeded. In the end, Russo turned out just like his idol, Jim Cornette.

But would Spike TV really get rid of viable programming because they don’t like Russo? Spike wasn’t currently dealing directly with Russo. TNA’s TV is crap. But if Spike believes that’s all Russo’s fault, I’m afraid I’ve got some BAD NEWS.

Sorry. Couldn’t resist.

No, Spike TV wasn’t currently dealing directly with Russo.

Spike TV was dealing directly with Dixie Carter.

During her time with Hogan, Dixie certainly learned. She has dominated TNA TV to an equally sickening degree, and she’s not Hulk Hogan. Her incompetence bleeds through the screen. Her stench permeates every nook and cranny.

Dixie Carter is TNA’s power and glory, both on camera and behind the scenes. If the promotion is failing, blame her. Some say Spike TV just got tired of dealing with Dixie’s hubris, ineptitude, dishonesty and stupidity. Now that’s a believable scenario.

Russo working for TNA wasn’t the problem. Dixie lying about it was the problem. As far as Spike TV’s concerned, that was her last lie. (To Spike TV, anyway. Dixie is still lying to TNA employees about “ongoing negotiations” and the state of the company. )

Dixie wasn’t going to go away. Spike TV knew that. So Spike TV went away.

TNA might get on some other cable station. Probably not, but maybe. If so, it’s just delaying the inevitable. It’s a horribly damaged brand and will never recover to any meaningful degree.

I just hope Dixie Carter is happy. Because she did this.

At least Hogan earned his ego. Dixie didn’t. But by feeding hers, she has potentially (probably) put dozens of people out of work and made the incredible shrinking wrestling business downsize even more.

Dixie Carter should be ashamed. But I doubt she’s ever experienced that emotion. If she were capable of that, TNA might not be in this position.

Follow Mark on Twitter: @MarkMaddenX

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