TNA Wrestling won the Sting sweepstakes. Instead of the rumored Sting vs. Undertaker WrestleMania 27 Dream Match, Sting fans were treated to Sting vs. Jeff Hardy on TNA Impact. Sting has re-signed with TNA and regained the TNA world title defeating Hardy at the Impact tapings. Check out the video!
This Sting to WWE story spiraled out of control a few weeks ago thanks to of all things a newspaper report. Yes, a newspaper report on pro wrestling in 2011 drove one of the biggest Internet stories of the year for three weeks. The New York Daily News “reported” that Sting had signed a one year contract with the WWE. The news combined with the mysterious 2.21.11 videos had fans buzzing about an impending Undertaker vs. Sting match at WrestleMania. It is now safe to report that the “report” was false and Sting will be sticking around the Impact Zone for at least another year.
The Sting saga has been an interesting one to say the least over the last few weeks. TNA helped fuel speculation when they removed Sting from their active roster page. Once Triple H squared off with the Undertaker on RAW it was quickly apparent that Sting wasn’t heading north after all. TNA taped the 3.3.11 Impact Thursday night in Fayetteville, NC which saw Sting return as a mystery opponent and pin Jeff Hardy to become the new TNA champion. Sting also cut a promo for a different Impact episode telling fans that he had “offers” but will remain loyal to TNA.
This is no disrespect to Sting who at one time was one of the best performers in the business. Unfortunately for Sting father time caught up with him and after the first few minutes of his matches, he moves as if he is being weighted down by 25 pound rocks in his boots. TNA fans aren’t accustomed to a younger main card so seeing Sting on top has been routine for a company that favors age over youth. As long as Sting wants to continue wrestling, staying with TNA is probably his best bet at this stage in the game. I think it is obvious that Sting would rather be a big fish in a smaller pond to finish out his career.
Unfortunately the return of Sting steals yet again another top spot from a younger fresh face that TNA could have elevated to their main-events. Sting signing with TNA makes sense, but does TNA signing Sting make sense? After a gigantic rating a few weeks back, the TNA Impact ratings have been sliding fast week by week. Last week’s rating dropped drastically from a 1.20 to a 1.13, tying the episode with the January 6 episode for the lowest ratings of the year. It is a bit ironic that two weeks after Matt Hardy tweets that he is responsible for TNA’s ratings increases that Dave Meltzer reports his match vs. AJ Styles lost 110,000 viewers last week. Better luck next time.
Even more alarming is that the return of The Rock and WrestleMania should have a domino effect on the entire pro wrestling business. Interest theoretically should be up across the board and more people usually tune into TNA Impact at this time of the year due to all of the WrestleMania hype. RAW’s ratings surged this past week. The fact that TNA’s ratings are drastically dropping at this time of the year is both surprising and scary if you are a TNA fan (not a TNA writer because of course there jobs are always safe).
I don’t think it is coincidence that TNA has been very active in the last few days signing celebrities and booking a fast title change. I just have the question the rush here. Wouldn’t it have been better to bring Sting back and actually make money off of his return match? Wouldn’t it have been smarter to make money off of a long chase to the title? Then again these are the same people that gave away Sting vs. Rob Van Dam for free, with little warning, and jobbed RVD in a matter of minutes.
So TNA fans can rest easy, you have your Sting back. Gear up for Sting vs. Ric Flair in 2011 and get ready to see one of the greatest feuds in WCW history bastardized because Ric Flair’s dignity is always for sale and Sting found another sucker. The alternative would be seeing Samoa Joe, AJ Styles, the Motor City Machine Guns, or Chris Daniels in your main-event. Nobody wants to see that in 2011 right?
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