Reaction Zone - A new direction can't come soon enough

In truth, nothing has really changed with TNA Impact Wrestling. I've read rumors that the acronym TNA (Total Non-Stop Action) will be retired, and the promotion, now owned by Anthem Sports, will simply be known as Impact Wrestling. That doesn't intrigue me in the least bit. As the company approaches its 15th anniversary this summer, it welcomed back one of its founding fathers, Jeff Jarrett, so it would make sense that if they are going through with a rebrand, they might as well adopt the name of Jarrett's new promotion, Global Force Wrestling, to ensure that GWF has a future. Global Force, as of this writing, doesn't have an American television deal, and could piggy-back onto what Impact has with Pop TV, or absorb Impact altogether, which would be best for all concerned.

Then again, with the return of Jarrett comes the returns of his lieutenants from his earlier run. Dutch Mantel, last seen as Zeb Colter in WWE until his release last year, is already in. Earlier this week, TNA welcomed back Scott D'Amore, but don't expect D'Amore, last seen bearing some resemblance physically to actor-comedian Tom Arnold, to take on some on-camera role. What would he be doing, anyway, other than bumping Pope D'Angelo Dinero from the broadcast booth? D'Amore does nothing for me, so he's better served not being heard or seen, y'dig?

Inevitably, the other shoe could drop, but Jarrett would be better off if he didn't invite back Vince Russo for another go-round. It was Russo who was the reason Spike TV ended their association with TNA a while back. Spike (soon to become the Paramount Network) didn't want him around, and made it seem like Russo was on the payroll behind their backs.

What Jarrett needs to do is start from scratch, and end the current mid-card angles. Having Bobby Lashley as your World champ is fine. Having Drew Galloway as the Grand Champion will work for the UK markets. The eccentric, delusional Hardys aren't long for the tag titles, and their act is approaching the end of its 15 minutes, because it could get stale before they face Ring of Honor champs the Young Bucks on April 1 in Lakeland, Florida. Problem is, the current TNA Uncreative team just broke up two teams that could've posed a challenge. Andrew Everett was dumped from the Helms Dynasty, leaving just Shane Helms and Trevor Lee, the X-Division champ. The Wolves are no more, with Davey Richards turning heel alongside wife Angelina Love against Eddie Edwards.

Where Uncreative has a problem lies with Mike & Maria Bennett. Maria's constant bullying of Allie (Laura Dennis, aka Cherry Bomb in the indies) has extended to Allie's real-life husband, Braxton Sutter (Pepper Parks), who's being forced by Maria to "marry" Laurel Van Ness (Chelsea Green), a ceremony that will air next week. Maria's also gotten lazier in the ring, based on what I've read, as if she's forgotten everything she learned in WWE from 2004-10. Apparently, Dixie Carter gave the Bennetts a bunch of money to do whatever they wanted when they signed last year. Maria's Knockouts title run was a sham, a reminder of how she's regressed instead of progressed. Then again, she didn't wrestle much in ROH, either.

What the Bennetts are doing is an analogue for WWE's Triple H & Stephanie McMahon, but Maria is an even worse actress than Steph. Did she learn nothing from her time in WWE? Apparently, the answer is no.

Turning Aron Rex into a modern day Liberace wannabe ain't helping matters, either. Adding Rockstar Spud to the mix makes zero sense, since he supposedly "quit" after losing to Swoggle, then returned as Rex's valet the next week. No continuity is a sign that Russo could still be lurking under the table in the creative office.

So insofar as TNA goes, if they're really headed in a new direction, to borrow a line from the late Yogi Berra, I'll believe it when I believe it.


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