What Happened To Impact Wrestling?

21 December 2021

The professional wrestling industry has always been dominated by the WWE/WWF (depending on how old you are). AEW has been a new entrant to the market, and they have already had a considerable amount of success. However, there is one wrestling promotion that seems to have a bit of fall from grace in recent years: Impact Wrestling.

Impact Wrestling, known as TNA in the early 2000s, has played host to countless major wrestling in their years. This includes Hulk Hogan and A.J. Styles. But what happened to Impact Wrestling? Well, not a lot. While they did lose their TV contract with Spike TV, this is a company that is still around. Perhaps not in the same position as they were before, but you can still catch Impact Wrestling events…if you know where to look.

Let’s go into a bit more depth on this. This way, you will know exactly where Impact Wrestling went, and where you can find them now.

The Start Of The Downfall

The first major TV contract that Impact Wrestling (then known as TNA) was able to secure was with Spike TV back in 2005. They managed to keep this contract running up until 2014, although the terms were renegotiated every so often.

Some would argue that the loss of the contract with Spike TV was what triggered the downfall of Impact Wrestling. While they were able to secure airplay on Destination America, the channel only attracted about 50% of the viewers that Spike TV was able to attract.

This rapidly pushed the wrestling promotion Ring of Honor in front of Impact Wrestling as the second most-watched wrestling promotion in the United States. This caused the company to start losing money…quite rapidly. In fact, there was the threat that Impact Wrestling would go bankrupt.

in 2016, both Billy Corgan (of Smashing Pumpkins fame) and Dixie Carter were brought in. Not long after, the company was purchased by Anthem. It was at this point that the company was rebranded from TNA to Impact Wrestling. 

Around the same time, Billy Corgan was seeing TNA for defaulting on cash they owed him. Oh, and the tax people were getting a little bit concerned about unpaid tax bills from TNA.

This is when TNA started to go through a bit of a dark period. It is when the real downfall of the company really started to happen.

The Downfall Of Impact Wrestling

The problem with having Billy Corgan and Dixie Carter at the head of the company was the fact that the pair of them didn’t really get on. They both wanted something completely different from TNA. In 2016, the wrestling community was overwhelmed with news stories about arguments between the pair of them.

Of course, when you have the two head honchos of the company arguing then not a whole lot is going to happen on the wrestling front. Some people would argue that the wrestling around this time was absolutely awful, which caused people to switch off TNA in their droves. 

Wrestling fans around the time will know that Billy Corgan was trying his absolute best to purchase the company, but that didn’t work out (he now owns a different wrestling company.

Enter Anthem. This is when the rebrand happened. TNA was dead. Impact Wrestling was here. The behind the scenes issues weren’t stopping, though. Oh no. While Billy Corgan and Dixie Carter had stopped their bickering, mostly because Billy Corgan had departed, you still had issues with Jeff Jarret. Of course, he was one of the founders of TNA. After being found passed out drunk several times, and letting the stress of building the company get to him, he was ousted.

Oh. Shortly after being forced out of the company, Jeff Jarrett decided to sue Anthem, which caused even more problems for them.

At this point, Impact Wrestling was way behind the viewership that it had. It barely had a presence on the TV in the United States, and many of the wrestlers that they were producing were being sucked up by other wrestling promotions.

Honestly, at this point, the only thing that was really keeping Impact Wrestling afloat was the fact that they had a decent international market, although this isn’t where the company wanted to be. It wanted to have a presence in the United States.

The Rise Of Impact Wrestling

By 2018, it is unlikely that you would have seen Impact Wrestling on TV all that much. It is still on TV in the US, but it no longer has the same prominence that it once did.

It can be found on AXS TV, which is perhaps not the best home for it. The channel is primarily known for shows that have more of a music focus. However, since AXS TV is owned by Anthem, it was pretty much the only place that Impact Wrestling could fit.

For a long while, impact Wrestling was able to reach new markets with their partnership with Twitch, although that ended in 2021 and was replaced with a partnership with YouTube, instead.

The problem for Impact Wrestling is that after all the years that it had been in turmoil when it finally started to rise from the ashes, the pandemic hit. This meant that Impact couldn’t produce anywhere near the amount of programming that it wanted to produce. Although, it now seems to be evident that Impact Wrestling is going to be a well-watched wrestling promotion again. Although, we doubt that it will hit the dizzying heights that it once did.

So, what happened to Impact Wrestling? Quite a lot. It has gone through management restructures. it has been shunted from channel to channel. It has had a presence on Twitch, which was then ditched. It has a presence on YouTube. While Impact Wrestling has never disappeared, it has been tough to find at times.

Based on what we have seen so far, and based upon the plans that Anthem clearly has for Impact Wrestling, it is unlikely that it is going to be disappearing any time soon.