There have been rumors for a while that Impact Wrestling was leaving Pop TV soon. When Pop moved the show from 8pm to 10pm in October, that certainly didn’t bode well. Now the news has officially come, via a press release from Impact, that the show is leaving Pop very soon.
Beginning on January 11th, Impact Wrestling will air on the Pursuit Channel, a cable network focused on outdoor recreation. Pursuit is keeping Impact in the 10-to-Midnight time slot, but moving it to Fridays. It does seem odd that Impact will air on a channel that’s mostly about hunting, fishing, and hiking, but on the other hand the wrestlers of Impact do go out into the woods to kill each other on a semi-regular basis, so I guess they count as outdoorsy.
In the official press release, Ed Nordholm, president of IMPACT Wrestling, seems pretty positive about the potential of Pursuit as a home for Impact:
Pursuit Channel is a natural fit for IMPACT! It has a passionate viewership base that correlates strongly with our core audience, and is one of the few broadcast destinations that is expanding its footprint, enjoying a 15% increase in broadcast distribution this year alone. With IMPACT Wrestling coming off a tremendous year of audience growth globally and positive fan engagement, we look forward to leveraging our respective resources to bring fans more of the wrestling content they want to see: tougher, edgier action.
Rusty Faulk, CEO and founder of the Pursuit Channel, is equally excited:
Pursuit Channel is pleased to welcome IMPACT Wrestling into our Friday night lineup of popular shows. IMPACT Wrestling programming is perfect for our audience, which enjoys adventurous content to feed their wild side. We look forward to a long partnership and providing our fans with new and exciting world-class content while expanding IMPACT Wrestling’s audience to a new base.
You can read the complete press release over at WrestlingInc. As for me, your humble Uproxx Impact Recapper, I’m not even sure the Pursuit Channel is available in my area. I’ll do my best to find a legal way to continue covering Impact, but currently this looks like an obstacle. It also feels like a shame that after one of the best years Impact’s ever had in terms of the on-screen product, they’re continuing to slide down the Cable TV ladder. Time will tell what the future holds, and I want only the best for Impact Wrestling and the performers who work there, regardless of whether I’m able to watch it myself (but I’d really like to keep watching it).