WADE KELLER PODCAST - EARLY PREVIEW OF ROYAL RUMBLE 2020 MEN'S MATCH, PLUS 2019 AND 2010 LOOK-BACK ROUNDTABLES
(Search "wade keller" to subscribe in podcast app or CLICK HERE to subscribe in Apple Podcasts.)
Under Anthem ownership, TNA Impact Wrestling is losing two of its most noteworthy acts. The Hardys and Drew Galloway have revealed they are not renewing their contracts.
Drew Galloway revealed yesterday on Twitter that he is leaving. He wrote: “Thank you Impact Wrestling for these past two years & everything we achieved together. I’ll miss everyone & I’ll see you down that long road.”
Thank you @IMPACTWRESTLING for these past two years & everything we achieved together. I'll miss everyone & I'll see you down that long road
— Drew Galloway (@GallowaySpeaks) February 27, 2017
Today, Bobby Lashley posted a farewell message. “You will be greatly missed brotha! Aside from being an amazing wrestler you were always an incredible person. Our paths will cross again.”
We reported last week that TNA officials had not pursued talks with Drew Galloway even as his contract expired. Based on Galloway’s Twitter comments, it appears those talks either didn’t happen and he gave up or they didn’t go well once they started.
Jason Powell at ProWrestling.net reports that contract talks between TNA Impact Wrestling and Matt and Jeff Hardy have reached an impasse. He reported the following: “The belief is that TNA wanted the Hardys to sign exclusive deals, which they apparently are not interested in doing. It’s logical from the perspective of the Hardys given the strong business they do on the independent scene. Meanwhile, TNA reportedly wanted a cut of the money the brothers were making independently. TNA was late sending contract offers to the Hardys and Drew Galloway, which is astonishing given the importance of those acts to the company.”
Powell also noted that the Hardys own the “Broken Matt” character and that Hardy was interested in a seat at the creative table in TNA. Read his full report HERE.
Pro Wrestling Sheet also reports today that the Hardys are departing also, reporting that they felt disrespected during contract talks. They were willing to sign for one year and had agreed to terms back in December, but there was a lack of communication regarding a few small changes they wanted included in the final draft. When the Hardys asked for creative control, TNA balked. When the Hardys said they had other interested parties, they were told to “go to WWE then” by TNA’s attorney, according to the report. At this point, the Hardys aren’t expected to be at the next tapings to write off their characters.
Matt Hardy posted on Twitter this morning: “It shall be an INTRIGUING week for the professional wrestling industry.”
It shall be an INTRIGUING week for the professional wrestling industry. pic.twitter.com/8pDkzwJu3y
— #BROKEN Matt Hardy (@MATTHARDYBRAND) February 27, 2017
The Hardys are TNA Tag Team Champions and have possession of the tag title belts. Matt’s wife, Reby Sky, wrote on Twitter: “I shouldn’t be surprised, but I am??? The disrespect never ends. F— it. Bout to melt these shits down and have me some new gold hoops that say MAXEL. Sigue.”
Keller’s Analysis: If TNA cannot afford to pay Galloway and the Hardys, or have a different direction planned for the company with new priorities, fine. If they just dropped the ball on negotiations, though, or got petty and personal or just sloppy with the process of resigning these top names, it’s a big blow to their next set of tapings. The roster was already thin, lacking buzz-generating young acts, and now they’ve lost arguably two of their three or four biggest known acts. This “new start” for TNA under Anthem ownership is not off to an encouraging start.