Maybe you haven’t heard, but things are going super awesome for Impact Wrestling (aka TNA) right now. They won a big injunction ruling against Billy Corgan, but Dixie Carter might lose control of the company anyway. They owe money to basically everyone they’ve ever met, and some people are already thinking about jumping ship. Well, good news! They just lost a lucrative TV deal, too! Wait … not “good news.” The other thing.
For the past few years (perhaps since before they lost their television deal with Spike), TNA’s biggest revenue streams have come from their television deals in India and the United Kingdom. On Tuesday, one of those deals came to an end, as Challenge TV announced they would no longer be airing Impact Wrestling in the UK. They had been airing TNA on their station since 2011, and in 2014 signed a three-year renewal contract. But when that contract is up in January, that’ll be all she wrote for TNA on Challenge.
Challenge released the following statement:
We know that many TNA fans will be disappointed to hear this, but we wanted to let you all know that as of January 2017, Challenge will no longer be the home of TNA in the UK. TNA has been a huge and important part of Challenge’s story over the years and we will treasure some great moments like the British Bootcamp and UK tours. We have been proud to bring UK viewers coverage of TNA and have huge respect for the company and its fans. TNA is packed with great talent and we know they will continue to do great things – we wish them all the best.
TNA has released their own statement in response to this news, saying they will work on finding a new station to carry the show in the UK and appearing to lay some of the blame for losing the deal on the fact that Challenge ran the weekly episodes several days after they have aired in the states.
We are proud to have had such a great relationship with Challenge, and appreciate how the channel brought Impact Wrestling to our avid viewers through the years. In today’s world, spoilers are inevitable. We’ve heard from the amazing fans in the UK and know you do not want to wait 3-5 days to watch the program after it airs in the US.
Our goal is to broadcast Impact Wrestling in the UK as close to the US premiere as possible. We look forward to announcing that opportunity soon, so stay tuned. In the meantime, we hope you continue to watch Impact Wrestling on Challenge, Sunday nights at 9pm, as well as Xplosion and pay-per-views and follow us on social media. Thank you.
TNA’s argument makes a certain amount of sense, because no one in the year 2016 likes watching wrestling well after the fact, but boy howdy, the timing of this couldn’t possibly have been worse for the company. I imagine any potential television stations in the UK will be beyond hesitant to enter into business for the TNA product given their current climate. Prove me wrong, UK programmers! Prove me wrong!