TNA Wrestling are fighting for their television lives and they are looking for some heavy hitters for assistance. According to reports, TNA are making a big play for a former WWE star in hopes that he can give them a much needed boost and open up a new audience.
[adinserter block=”1″]Dave Meltzer had the story in the latest edition of the Wrestling Observer Newsletter. According to Dave, Dixie Carter is making a big play for Rey Mysterio Jr. According to Meltzer, the company is doing everything it can to entice the former WWE world champion.
“The company made a big play this past week for Rey Mysterio Jr., who is still most likely headed to Lucha Underground, even though nothing official has been announced yet. John Gaburick and Dixie Carter both talked with him. They pushed the idea that they could get his merchandise into all the stores, and open doors for movies and TV to him, and they would build around him as their long-sought-after Mexican superstar. They also noted that if he signed with them, he could work anywhere he wanted on his off days.”
This is yet another aggressive move by the company to sign a former WWE Latino star. The company reportedly made a big play for Alberto Del Rio shortly after he was released from his WWE deal. Interestingly enough, Meltzer doesn’t indicate whether Rey accepted, considered, or turned down the offer although all indications are at this point that he hasn’t signed a deal.
It is a very intriguing story when you put it in context with all of the rumors about Destination America dropping Impact Wrestling in September. The idea that TNA would somehow have the resources to sign a Rey Mysterio contradicts a lot of what we have read about TNA’s current state. TNA’s owners Panda Energy certainly have the funds, but I can’t see how TNA could have presented Panda with reasonable investment strategy into pouring all of those resources into one wrestler at a time where the company’s future is in doubt.
A TNA defender could look at this story as the glass half-full and conclude that TNA has a firm commitment from Destination America to stay past September. How else could TNA in its right mind make a serious offer to Rey when Mysterio is aware of all of the turmoil surrounding the company? Why would Mysterio even consider it at that point? A skeptic would say that TNA may be using this story to deflate all of those cancellation rumors. Maybe TNA management knew that Rey would not sign yet used this story to alleviate concerns of staff that the company is in jeopardy of losing its TV deal?
I also don’t see how TNA could make those promises about merchandise when I can’t recall ever seeing a piece of TNA merchandise in my local mall or department stores. I also don’t recall seeing any TNA talent in any recent movies or starring television roles outside of reality TV. The story almost sounds like a joke if you really sit back and think about it.
[adinserter block=”2″]One option this brings to mind is a player-owner type of a deal. When CM Punk’s contract was coming due before his big run at Money in the Bank, I floated the idea of TNA signing Punk to a deal where he became a part owner, receiving a small percentage of the company’s revenue. Of course that never happened, but it would be a creative way to get a deal done. Paul Heyman wanted a similar deal when he negotiated with TNA several years ago to come in and book and we all know how that worked out.
I will say this. I’d love to see Kurt Angle vs. Rey Mysterio one more time. I think these guys had one of the most underrated series of matches in WWE history. Other than that, I see no reason why Rey Mysterio would sign with TNA. It’s a fun story and I believe that TNA did make a play, I just can’t believe that anyone from TNA really thought they had a shot of signing him.