MAILBAG: Can TNA Ever Seriously Compete With WWE?

SEScoops Mailbag for August 17th

(please submit YOUR questions to [email protected])

Q: What happened to the angle with Charlie Sheen and Daniel Bryan? Is that still in play? – Ryan S.

A: They haven’t mentioned his name the last two weeks on Raw, which makes me think they never had a deal for him to be there to begin with, or they do but they simply don’t trust him enough to actually show up. I tend to lean towards the latter. Why hype something you may not be able to deliver?

Q: With the success of the Monday Night Wars between WCW & WWE in the ’90s, do you think that if TNA had the financial backer that Ted Turner was to WCW, with a national TV network like TNT that they could compete with WWE? – Vaughn

A: I don’t think so. Times are different now. Wrestling was so much more popular back then and WCW was a far more established name than TNA currently is, even after 10 years. They’ve brought in every big name you can imagine, from Hulk Hogan to Ric Flair to Sting, Kurt Angle, Jeff Hardy and everyone in between and it hasn’t made much of a difference. It’s kind of depressing, really, especially now that the product has shown great improvement since the departure of Vince Russo. There are two major things working against them: 1) the product was so bad for so long that there is still a negative stigma attached to the TNA initials, and 2) taping their shows in such small, intimate venues gives the perception that it is a minor league promotion, and perception is reality. Short of them stealing John Cena away from WWE, I don’t think there is anything they can do other than stay the course and just put on the best product they possibly can. As WWE goes, so goes the wrestling business, so if they suddenly get hot again, I think TNA would also benefit from that.

Q: Do you have any idea when WWE started to plan for Undertaker to [go undefeated at WrestleMania]? Roughly when did they start to hype him as undefeated in the build-up, commentary etc. – Tom C. from England

A: I don’t believe WWE ever had a “plan” for Undertaker to go undefeated at WrestleMania. It was likely something they realized along the way and they just decided to run with it. The first mention of his “streak” that I can recall came right after his win over Triple H at WrestleMania 17 when Jim Ross said he had just gone 9-0.

Q: I read an article that the feud between Dean Ambrose and Mick Foley has been canceled due to Foley being pissed [a comment made by Ambrose]. Is that true? What Foley wrote looks like a work to me. Also, did HHH have anything to do with the feud being [nixed]? If not, what’s the reason? It really bothers me. – Shaneel from Mauritius

A: Total work between the two of them. Foley is actually very high on Ambrose, hence why he wanted to do something with him. I do know that HHH does not view Foley as a serious performer and has reportedly said things in creative meetings to undermine any ideas for him, so he very well may have played a role in them getting away from the Foley/Ambrose stuff. That’s a shame because it could have been a very effective way to introduce the guy by associating him with a big name right out of the gate.

Q: Is #RAWactive rigged by WWE or is it actually real where the fans actually have a say? – Harrison

A: As far as I know, much like the old Cyber Sunday voting, it’s 100% legit.