How About a Super-card?
Near the end of last week one of my readers brought to my attention the fact that Dixie Carter would be open to doing business with WWE to have some type of Supercard. She made some good points such as how competition is always good for the professional wrestling business. On paper, this would be a great idea. The idea of an event like this is really old hat! Pro Wrestling Illustrated Magazines back in the day seemed to always have issues asking fans what would happen if there was a card involving WWF vs NWA back in the 80s and in the 90s WWF vs WCW. Back in the 70’s and even in the early 80’s there were shows held that were advertised as unification bouts between the World champions from the WWF, AWA, and the NWA. An example of one of these matches was WWF Champion Bob Backlund vs NWA Champion Ric Flair back in 1982 on the 4th of July; fans were pretty hype at the idea that professional wrestling would have one World champion. Fans of both companies argued over who and why their champion would leave with both titles. Of course, these matches normally ended either in a draw or a double count out so that neither promotion’s champion was made to look inferior. While there wasn’t a clear winner, it drew VERY big gates because of the idea that fans felt they could be witnessing a historic event. I’m sure both promoters were counting money at the end of the night. If this was going to be take place, now would be the time. Neither wrestling company is doing TOO great in the ratings, but they are doing well enough to keep their sponsors happy. Wrestling has been pretty stagnant ever since WCW closed its doors, and this could be just the shot on the arm that pro wrestling needs to get fans interested again. That’s the keyword COULD be. If an event like this were to take place, imagine all of the politics. WWE guys wouldn’t want to lose to guys on the TNA roster because they feel that they are beneath them (if you need proof see the Invasion storyline back in 2001 when the WCW guys were made out to look like losers every chance possible against WWF guys). Not only would the WWE guys feel a sense of superiority, so would all of the other employees involved such as the road agents, Triple H and Vince McMahon himself! I can understand why the folks at WWE would feel this way. They have WAY more viewers; draw bigger lives gates, higher buyrates, etc. TNA is the number 2 professional wrestling organization in North America, but they are number 2 in the same way that the 1992 Croatian Basketball Team, who took the silver medal at the Olympics, is 2nd place to the Dream Team! That makes them a distant #2. The other problem with this may be the fans. As a wrestling columnist, I frequent a lot of professional wrestling groups on Facebook and I talk to a lot of wrestling fans on Twitter too. From what I gather, there are going to be a lot of fans who will be seeing what TNA Wrestling is for the first time. There are a lot of fans who don’t watch TNA at all, so they wouldn’t even know who a lot of these guys are outside of the guys that wrestling for TNA who once wrestled for WWE, and I am sure there will even be employees in Titan Tower who will know of TNA’s existence for the first time. And there area lot of guys on the TNA roster who are considered WWE rejects. The only way that this would work is if the TNA are going to be made to look on the same level as the WWE guys. This is something that would have worked in the 90s if Vince McMahon & Ted Turner would have done business together because at one point the viewership, buyrates, and live gates for WCW were either on par or better than the WWF. Are the higher ups at WWE just content with the product as it is because they are generating some cash? Why not look at the bigger picture and the idea of generating more cash by booking matches with the other national wrestling company that has TV presence? Over in Japan, it’s already been done! The top promotions there which are New Japan Pro Wrestling, All Japan Pro Wrestling, and Pro Wrestling Noah have already done a few of these Supercards because everyone was willing to put their egos aside in order for money to be made! They saw that the wrestling business was down in their country and chose to pull together in order to help get things back on track. It has been done to the point where it isn’t uncommon for someone to be a champion in both New Japan and All Japan or to be a champion in both All Japan and Noah. We know that Dixie Carter’s TNA group would benefit from the exposure, and maybe even get fans of WWE to sample their product and see how their roster of athletes are actually better than WWE’s. I am sure that WWE fans are tired of seeing the same guys wrestle one another on Raw, Smackdown, and even on Pay Per View. What better way to see some fresh matches only if for one night? If the two sides do agree, the other question would be if the two sides can trust one another. Back in the 80s the AWA, NWA, and World Class Championship Wrestling tried getting together to form Pro Wrestlng USA and by doing a show that was known as “Super Clash”, and before the show (as well as at other shows the company had done together) David Crockett was accused of trying to sign away AWA guys to the NWA. Can you be sure that Vince McMahon wouldn’t try to sign away Bobby Roode? In this World of litigation something like this may not happen, at least not while a person is under contract. As someone who watches both companies, I wouldn’t mind shelling out the cash for a Supercard between the two organizations. It would be interesting to see what would happen when a roided up megalomaniacal senior citizen and a clueless money mark come together for this event to promote it. Right now I am sure this show won’t take place anytime soon, but never say never! As always, you can follow me on Twitter @whosantcox, and I can be reached by email at firstname.lastname@example.org. See you next time, wrestling fans!