Home > General Wrestling > Thoughts on WWE vs. TNA on Monday January 4/2010

Thoughts on WWE vs. TNA on Monday January 4/2010

The big news coming out last night during Spike TV’s Ultimate Fighter finale was Hulk Hogan saying that TNA would have a three hour edition of Impact on Monday, January 4th to go head to head with WWE’s Raw. It’s going to air from 8-11pmET. It’s a one time thing. It won’t be weekly, at least not yet. Maybe if it does well we’ll see it again, but for now it’s a one time thing. I think it’s smart to wait until January because they won’t have Monday Night Football to compete against and with all the hype they can do over the next month they should generate some interest. The strong rumor is that WWE will also have a three hour show. What’s interesting is that WWE was hoping to have The Rock in as the guest host that week, but due to his movie schedule it’s probably not going to happen. They’re more likely to get him in March.

Now, the question is what does it mean for TNA, for WWE and for us as fans? Let’s break it down.

TNA: I think it’s great for TNA. Yes, Impact’s ratings hover around the 1.0 mark every week while Raw gets about a 3.5 most weeks, but this is on a different level. The Monday night wrestling crowd is bigger than what there’s even been on a Thursday (for Smackdown or Thunder back in the day), Friday or Saturday. For over fifteen years now wrestling fans have been conditioned to watch wrestling on Monday nights. From that period from about 1996 to 2000 there were 8 million or more fans in the US alone watching wrestling on Monday nights. If the products are good the wrestling fans will come. Regarding Hogan, I’ve never been a huge fan of his in terms of his in ring work. He bored me twenty years ago. He bored me ten years ago. And he’ll bore me today when he is in a ring. However, the guy is the biggest name in the history of the business. Casual fans know him. The casual fan probably hasn’t heard of TNA. Because of him, they might be willing to watch TNA to see some of the great talents they have there like Styles, Angle, Wolfe, Samoa Joe and all the rest.

The big question is does this change the face of TNA to the point that instead of a match like Styles vs. Daniels in the main event are we going to get something like Hogan vs. Nash? I don’t want to see that. I want to see Hogan in there putting people over at least verbally. The problem is it’s Hulk Hogan. He’s not prone to doing that. He can talk about how the only reason they got head to head with Raw for one night is because of him and honestly he’s right in that thought. It’s the truth. That novelty will wear off pretty fast, though. They need to be able to keep the viewers by showcasing the great talent they have in the company. Is Hogan familiar with the talent? Did he even watch Impact before he realized he needed to make money after his divorce took a lot of his cash from him? What are his motives? To me, Hogan’s in TNA because Vince didn’t want him in WWE again. That’s what I think. Maybe I’m wrong, I don’t know. Hogan’s always been a sly kind of individual. He’s like a politician. He’ll say one thing publicly and mean something else totally. I hope he’s going to put business before himself, but as we saw in WCW you never know with him.

I’m happy for TNA. They’ve got a lot of hardworking people there (wrestlers as well as the non-wrestlers) who have busted their ass for seven long years. This is their chance to reach some new fans. I hope they don’t blow it. I want them to succeed big time. It’s not a case of rooting for WWE or against TNA for me. It’s about the business for me. The more wrestlers that can have full time work in the US the better. I wish them nothing but he best.

WWE: My hope is that going head to head with TNA will light a fire under the creative team and lead to something big happening on that night. Considering that it’s the first show of the year they should have plenty of time to book something that works creatively. The question is, what? Would they be foolish enough to do a “dream match” like Undertaker vs. Cena on that show considering that’s what the plan is for Mania (unless they can somehow lure The Rock for Mania)? Do they call in Steve Austin and see if he can be the guest host for the night even though he’s trying to distance himself from WWE to concentrate on his acting career? It’s hard to know what we’re going get that night.

You know what I think they should do? Michaels vs. Undertaker. If it’s not happening at WrestleMania 26 (the plan right now is Cena vs. Undertaker) then go with a rematch of the 2009 match of the year in Michaels vs. Undertaker. Why not? Play video packages highlighting the greatness of their previous match. Have them cut a face to face promo on the last Raw to end the year. Some kind of face to face thing. I’m not a huge fan of doing big matches for free on TV, but in this case with TNA going live against them why not try to put on one of the best matches you possibly can? I’m not sure what they will do, though. That’s just an idea. I’m sure over the next month we’ll read more and rumors will fly about other possibilities as well. This is only just the beginning.

Honestly, this kind of makes me want to try fantasy booking that January 4th edition of Raw. I might. We’ll see.

Fans: I think it’s great for us. I love the pro wrestling business (the column I posted a couple of days ago gave you plenty of reasons why) and I want to see it succeed. If this pushes WWE to be better then I’m all for it especially with the run to WrestleMania coming. We all know that WWE’s product has been pretty stagnant the last couple of years. The main event scene hasn’t changed much and there’s a good chance the same six to eight guys are going to be involved in the top three matches at WrestleMania again. However, this is going to push them in a way that nothing else really could. Don’t get me wrong, TNA in the big picture is hard to compare with WWE. They’re only seven years old while WWE has been around for generations now. They’ve got more money, more television and more viewers. They’ve also had no real reason to get better because they haven’t felt a push from a competitor for eight years. Now they have that. And it’s going to benefit us more than anybody.

I don’t know about you, but I’m excited for January 4th. What will TNA do and how will WWE counter it? I’m actually excited about a Monday night of wrestling for a change. Maybe I’m too optimistic. We’ll see.

As for me, I’ll write The Raw Deal on that Tuesday like I always do. Nothing changes for me. There’s no NFL game and 24 won’t start for a couple of weeks, so I’ll be flipping back and forth most likely. I’ll watch Raw live and use the DVR for Impact most likely.

Regarding this week’s Impact, I thought it was an awful show. I like Mick Foley as much as the next guy, but there were way too many segments with him. Yes, Hogan’s coming in and I understand the idea is to have Hogan lead a group (probably as babyfaces) while Foley leads the other group (probably as heels), but it was too much. The show was segment after segment. The matches weren’t very good either. Can you believe they interrupted a Daniels/Abyss match with a video where the Beautiful People (suggested for by the heel Daniels) attacked Abyss’ “girlfriend” Lauren the interviewer? This is how this company puts over the number one contender to the World Title. What the fuck? I really like the Angle/Wolfe feud, but we really didn’t see anything new or different again. Wolfe attacking him from behind has been done plenty. They’ll have the PPV match and Angle will win again. It’s not bad. It’s just too repetitive.

What do you think? Throw a comment in down below, on my Facebook page or email at oratoryjohn@gmail.com if you want. Are you excited about Monday January 4th like me or am I losing it? Let me know.

I’ll have more tonight maybe. I’m so behind on replying to emails and shit, but obviously this is the biggest story in the business right now. I wanted to get some thoughts out there while I had a bit of time on this Sunday morning.

  1. December 6, 2009 at 10:30 AM

    I think, as a wrestling fan, that this is a good move. Having two wrestling companies competing against each other, even though it’s for one night (currently) brings a level of freshness to the door. It means that we will get close to the level of competition that we did when the “actual” (not the storyline) WCW was around. While I don’t think that TNA right now has a shot at catching up to WWE ratings wise, anything that can bring them more viewers to their company will be a positive move. Hopefully, we won’t get any more of this “Foley Nonstop Talking” If TNA puts on a good show, and realizes that while they are not at the level of WWE, they can sure as hell get there eventually. Here’s to competition, and hopefully a “TNA Commentfest” eventually.

  2. Anonymous
    December 6, 2009 at 12:07 PM


    • mnowax
      December 7, 2009 at 1:14 AM

      Sorry their gravestone was written Oct 26th

      December 8, 2009 at 7:33 PM


  3. robyn
    December 6, 2009 at 12:55 PM

    I don’t think it will be as dire as TNA’s complete demise, but WWE will win in ratings unless TNA pulls off something bigger than my little brain can imagine.

  4. Andy
    December 6, 2009 at 1:27 PM

    If WWE do anything to counter TNA, which I am not sure they will, then I could see Cena & Undertaker versus Sheamus & Batista happening which could then build towards Wrestlemania for Cena and Undertaker or maybe even Cena and Batista.

  5. Adam Dawes
    December 6, 2009 at 2:11 PM

    I think WWE could use a fresh TV Main Event (Cena vs. Michaels, Orton vs. Michaels, Taker vs HBK (my favourite choice)) to light a fire under 2 critical Main Event pushes. My hope by then is that Morrison is no longer the champion, and a 25 minute match going over either Jericho or Orton would cement him as a top guy. Also seeing Kofi go over someone big (HHH?) would be massive.

    TNA will bring the thunder with Styles, Daniels, Joe, Angle and Wolfe, but this could be the perfect time for WWE to say – “Hey, not only have we got the best Megastars (Taker vs. HBK, having Jericho, Cena, HHH, Orton involved heavily), way bigger than Nash, Angle, Foley etc. but our younger guys are better than your younger guys!

    Imagine the visual image of Styles losing to Nash in the Main Event, and at the same time, Kofi and Morrison have gone over HHH and Orton in 25 minute matches. Will be a systematic spanking of TNA by WWE.

  6. danny d
    December 6, 2009 at 2:55 PM

    I like the young guys of TNA and i hope this helps them get TNA over.

  7. December 6, 2009 at 3:26 PM

    My worry is that Vince will put on the same old shit and ignore TNA like he has been doing for years. We haven’t gotten the HBK/Taker rematch yet and it should be at this RAW. If Vince wants to keep his audience on this night, kill the midget! Plus they should book a competent Host, Austin or The Rock are highly unlikely but would be perfect. Maybe Bret Hart??? It is time for WWE to show that they are the big leagues and TNA can’t touch them that’s why they should pull out all the stops for this show. This is asking for way too much, but give us one of those 3 guys listed as host, then book these four matches. HBK vs Undertaker, Kofi vs Orton, vs Morrison vs Jericho and have Cena defend the title, have a battle royal to start the show or just give it to Sheamus. Give all the matches 15 min or more. This show I just laid out would make any WWE fan happy, how could it not? I’m glad TNA is going to try to push WWE, because it can only make WWE better.

      December 8, 2009 at 7:37 PM

      I WILL.

  8. Andy McKellar
    December 6, 2009 at 5:08 PM

    I think this is good news. If TNA can stay clear of some of the poor angles they do and stick to what they do well it gives three hours to show the quality of their talent, and, as you say John, it could give WWE creative a kick up the ass to throw out something special. I for one will be excited as well, but whether we’ll get 3hr Impact on Monday night/Tuesday morn in UK I don’t know yet.

  9. Rob
    December 6, 2009 at 5:09 PM

    I think, There is a chance, that the Jan4 RAW, could be the WORST RAW of all time. I’m seeing HHH beat Orton in the main event, and no sign of Kofi, Shaemus, Morrison etc etc etc. I really hope Im wrong!

    • kris Karcher
      December 6, 2009 at 8:11 PM

      im not really sure why you would see that happening? i think that WWE will realize that it needs to put on a hell of a show. but i guess all we can do is hope.

  10. Lee
    December 6, 2009 at 6:57 PM

    I love the idea. WWE needs a kick in the ass, and badly. I don’t really think TNA can compete at this point, but going head to head (even once) will push both companies to perform. I think re-starting the Monday Night Wars would be a HUGE mistake for TNA, but this is a great way to get their product out there. Hopefully they’ll follow up by keeping a strong product, but on another night. There’s no reason to try and make people choose between the two right now, it would be the end of TNA. A few more years with greater exposure could set the stage for a later head to head battle, though.

  11. kris Karcher
    December 6, 2009 at 8:08 PM

    i love this move. nothing motivates people more than competition. and this is just what the ever so stale WWE needs right not. lets face the product that WWE puts out week after week is getting old. there are a few bright spots here and there but the main event scene stinks. wrestling isn’t what it was ten years ago. when WCW was at the top of there game it forced the WWE to raise the bar. both brands did. it was necessary. survival of the fittest. every week they had to think really hard about how are we going to beat the other guys. and let me tell you it made for some great wrestling. my favorite times ever by far. i can’t really say i want either to succeed or fail because im a fan of wrestling. not of a company. and anything that is good for wrestling is perfectly fine. and trust me a monday night war that will breath life into a dieng monday night tradtion will be good… no great… no wonderfull for the sport of wrestling. as john said for the fans, tna and wwe. we all benifit from this.

  12. Evan
    December 6, 2009 at 9:25 PM

    This is exactly what the WWE needs right now, but I am afraid that Vinnie Mac might stick with his big guns and give us a main event of either HHH/Orton/Cena, all the while Cole is calling this the biggest main event in RAW history.

      December 8, 2009 at 7:40 PM


  13. Pedro Ramos
    December 7, 2009 at 12:27 AM

    I used to love and follow TNA in its heyday on Spike Tv because honestly what made me watch it was the X-Division. That division featured some of the best technical and chain wrestling I’ve seen since ECW’s Tajiri, Jerry Lynn & Super Crazy would tear down an ECW ring. It’s a shame since Scott D’Amore left the booking duties to Vince Russo that their product has gone down the drain. There’s a noticeable difference in content between before Russo and after Russo and bringing in Hogan is just another example of trying to cash in on another name…All Hogan is going to do is put himself over until Vince needs a guest host for Raw and calls Hogan and he’ll be on the first plane to Stamford!!! Someone in TNA please call Paul Heyman and offer him partial ownership and full booking duties and turn this into ECW Jr.!!!

  14. Chris Smith
    December 7, 2009 at 12:43 AM

    I think Vince McMahon probably looks @ TNA like a mosquito buzzing around his head. Dixie Carter made the comment that TNA is firing the 1st shot. I think that this “shot” is the bite that’s going to cause McMahon to swat the mosquito. I think every wrestling fan who was around in the 80’s and 90’s would agree that WWE has better programming when they have competition. When WCW started Nitro they fired the first shot then. They had Eric Bischoff, who was a wrestling guy with good ideas and a hatred for Vince McMahon running the show. The problem was he didn’t have any liability. The money he was spending wasn’t his. He had Ted Turner’s bank book with an unlimited supply of checks. He was gambling with someone else’s money. That worked fine for a long time, but eventually there came a time of accountability. By the time that rolled around, McMahon had once again showed the wrestling world why he’s the most brilliant promoter in the history of pro-wrestling.
    Almost 15 yrs later, here we go again. TNA wants us to beleive it’s the same story again with younger, smarter, better players, and that’s true to an extent with Hogan, Bischoff, and Kevin Nash. However, They’re not playing with Ted Turner’s money. They’re playing with Dixie Carter’s and I doubt, despite what Hogan or Carter say, that she’s going to give full control over the product to anyone. Also, they’re not on the company owner’s own television network (Ted Turner owned TBS and TNT in the beginning of the Monday Night Wars). They’re on Spike TV, and Spike is going to be interested in TV ratings.
    In the end, I think the Jan. 4 edition of TNA will probably get higher ratings than usual. I think most of the viewers of both shows that night will probably be switching back and forth. Personally, I don’t think TNA is anywhere near being ready to compete head to head with WWE. They have a lot of good young wrestlers, but they don’t have many established wrestling super stars, outside Kurt Angle, Kevin Nash, and no Hulk Hogan. WWE has all of them and a strong line up of young talent also who, unfortunately, seem to be cruising along in their comfort zone right now. In the late 80’s no one was a bigger Hulk Hogan fan than I was, but I was 12 or 18 yrs old, and that’s who WWE catered to then. Does anyone remember Hogan’s last PPV matches in WWE against HBK and Randy Orton. He looked horrible. Every one who thinks Hogan is TNA’s saviour should kiss Orton and HBK firmly on the ass for making him look half way convincing in these matches, and this hurts me to say because I was such a big Hogan fan.
    When the 1st Monday Night Wars started it always upset me when someone who you had never heard of before they worked for Vince McMahon and then became a star showed up on Nitro on in an internet interview talking trash about WWE, and how they were going to put McMahon out of business. We saw how that eventually turned out. Now here we go again with TNA. Truth to be told, whether you like or hate WWE and Vince McMahon none of us who watch pro-wrestling, and very few of the actual wrestlers currently active anywhere in the world would be interested or involved in pro-wrestling if it weren’t for Vince McMahon. If nothing else, we should all respect him for taking pro-wrestling to the level it is and has been at for the last 25 + years. The next year should be an interesting one for pro-wrestling.

      December 8, 2009 at 7:48 PM


  15. toby tobias
    December 7, 2009 at 8:14 AM

    this will not be close to the monday night war. i dont tune in to TNA often, partly due to their time slot, partly due to inept production. the in-ring product has the chance to shine, esp. the homegrown talent, but they have too many wcw/wwe guys in now who are trying to get these athletic, fast paced guys to wrestle “main-event style”. plus the booking is a shambles. is ole anderson on the payroll? i really believe that even with the PG limit placed on the wwe show, the talkers are better, the wrestling is more polished (even cena..), the announce crew is more…well they are about even. fucking michael cole. the production level makes TNA look like a high school gymnasium, or worse, the set of WCW worldwide from about 1993. TNA has 2 things going for them as John has written about several times: knockouts and an actual tag divishion. TNA has a nice niche on thursdays, and if history has showed us anything, you can co-exist with vince, but he’ll bury you if step on his monday night toes.

  16. Tabitha
    December 7, 2009 at 9:36 AM

    I love the idea in the fact that, like you said, it might very well result in the best RAW we’ve seen in a while.

    I wish WCW…I MEANT…TNA the best. Good luck. Hope history doesn’t repeat itself.

  17. Chris
    December 7, 2009 at 12:31 PM

    Maybe I’m too much of an HBK fan, but I don’t want to see HBK vs. Undertaker ever again. Their match at WM was something that will never be duplicated again, between them, and I don’t want to even see them try, I feel it’s that special. Everyone is talking about bringing in the Rock, Austin, I even saw a Bret Hart thrown out there to be guest host, and I would love to see any of them, but it’s unlikely any of the three would do it. Why not bring Edge in for one night to guest host? They can stoke the fire more between him and Jericho by Edge announcing a tag title match between Jerishow and Hart Dynasty, putting over the Dynasty and putting the belts on them, a fresh idea. Also this way they jab back at TNA for TNA claiming the WWE doesn’t care about tag titles. I think the unraveling of DX would be a great spot for this show. Have HHH give HBK a beatdown that keeps him out until Rumble. I don’t really care to see this, and it’s been done before, but it’s going to happen sooner or later, and maybe they can bring Sheamus in with HHH to do the beatdown to give it a twist. Sheamus can say he did it because he’s aways admired HHH and they slowly begin a friendship from there. This way instead of seeing 3-4 months of HHH vs. HBK we can see it once or twice and then at Mania you’ve got a match between Sheamus and HBK, something fresh. Edge can’t guest host without helping his buddy Christian. Edge takes Christian off of ECW and brings him to SD and also gives him a match that night, to be the #1 contender for the World Title. I think a Jericho run-in during the match to screw Christian would be a possibility here to start a feud between those two until Edge comes back to wrestle. If edge doesn’t make it back you can have a blow off match at Mania between Jericho and Christian. Sorry I’m thinking ahead here. It’s hard to say where Kofi/Orton is going to be at this point, but I think they should give Kofi a title match on this night, no matter who is champ. If it’s Sheamus you’ve got an easy reason, he eliminated Kofi in the Breakthrough Battle Royal, if Cena, well maybe Cena respects what Kofi has done in his feud with Orton, and to piss Orton off even more, he feels Kofi deserves a shot. Maybe do a run-in from Orton to end the match costing Kofi the title while the same time keeping the coals warm for another Cena?orton fued down the road. This is going longer than I thought so I’ll end by saying they also need to do something big with Morrison, Miz, Bourne, MVP. Maybe Miz can go over HHH, and HHH blames HBK for not helping and that’s what causes the turn. Who knows, but they need to do something significant with those guys.

  18. JG
    December 8, 2009 at 12:43 PM

    If WWE was smart: 2009 Slammy Awards. Match of the year? HBK/Taker….HBK’s reminded of his close loss….HBK decides to challenge Taker to a re-match. He does it in 2010 so they can set the bar high for 2010….that gives you your main event on Jan. 4th: HBK vs. Taker

    Also, when I hear “break it down” I’m now conditioned to think “GLOWSTICKS!”

      December 8, 2009 at 7:51 PM


    • JG
      December 15, 2009 at 12:26 AM

      As I watched RAW tonight…I was excited when HBK issued a challenge to the Undertaker because it was exactly how I thought it’d go down….until they made it for WM 26. SO CLOSE JOHN CANTON!

  19. Steve F.
    December 9, 2009 at 2:10 PM

    It’s hard to fill up 3 hours worth of content. I feel like it was the main reason why I stopped watching WCW, and another reason why I don’t tune in to see the Raw 3-hour specials: IT’S JUST TOO MUCH. We’ll probably see a lot of interview segments, comedy, and a battle royal featuring everyone who is not already in a match. I want TNA to succeed, but stick with the 2-hour formula, it feels just right.

  20. Anonymous
    December 10, 2009 at 11:32 AM

    I don’t think Vince is even going to care. WWE is now “sports entertainment” not wrestling. Monday night is a variety show, it has skits, guys who walk slowly, a guy that doesn’t even have the decency to hulk up when he makes a comeback, girls who are going to legit hurt each other b/c they don’t what they’re doing, singing, special guest stars and of course who can forget the comedy gold that is a midget only HBK understands

  21. December 19, 2009 at 10:30 PM

    I’m excited, but I don’t want to get too excited. Hopefully WWE creative comes through and makes a show worthy of being a part of the “Attitude Era”. I also hope TNA can put together a show that will draw in some fans.

    I’m thinking that TNA will draw over some fans who are sick of seeing the same old shit on WWE, and if TNA puts something “new” out there on Jan. 4th, they’ll be able to keep those fans.

    Over the last few months, I think history has been repeating itself. WWE is doing the same self-poisoning that WCW did to kill itself. Not creating new characters from the youngs/new guys that us fans can get behind or hate. They’re doing too much of the same stuff in the upper-card (D-Generation X, Randy Orton, John Cena, The Undertaker, Chris Jericho). I like what they’re doing with Sheamus and Kofi Kingston (although that seems to have simmered). They NEED to do more of that. The championships are being devalued by having so many title changes so often. It reminds me of “The Finger Poke of Doom”.

    Creative needs somebody to light a fire under their ass! They haven’t done anything really good in probably 5 or 6 years as far as storylines and comedy bits go (except Santino Marella).

    TNA, for the love of God don’t book a match that has Hogan as the main focus, or Nash. Push your young guys. Try and do something special that will make the fans WANT to watch you. Take a good page from WCW’s history and do something like “The Insiders” and beginning of the nWo. Now I hope they don’t do something literally like that stuff, but do something captivating like that stuff. You have a creative team too, USE IT!

    Those are my thoughts on the January 4th, 2010 “Monday Night Showdown” between Raw and Impact, John.

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