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AS I SEE IT Bob Magee Pro Wrestling: Between the Sheets PWBTS.com

So TNA’s at it again.

First, by hiring everyone’s favorite football felon (not named Michael Vick) Adam “Pacman” Jones and paying him a ton of money…then finding out he can’t do anything physical due to the Tennessee Titans filing a lawsuit.
They had to do the single most awkward looking set of skits with Jones in the history of wrestling.

Meanwhile, to pay for the salary of America’s second favorite football felon, TNA released Jerry Lynn, Danny Basham, Damaja, Matt “Brother Runt”
Hyson (aka Spike Dudley) and Matt Bentley. Lance Hoyt and Christy Hemme were “not brought in” for the last PPV and TV taping.

Yup. Even the most hardcore WWE mark could tell you that Jerry Lynn for Pacman is one helluva crappy trade-off.

Then, TNA managed to screw up something they had absolutely free…Alan Wojcik.

Alan Wojcik gave TNA free publicity for 5 years on dozens of websites ranging in size from PWBTS.com to Dave Meltzer’s Wrestling Observer.com, and got treated like crap as a result.

Wojcik had an agreement with TNA’s media relations department where he would cover the product like I was a sportswriter or beat writer for a sports team.

Then issues started coming up this past February phone call Media Department head Steven Godfrey, first in telling Wojcik not to post an interviews that wase so fluffy, I felt like I was inside a bottle of Downy. Then, eventually Godfrey got to the real issue, telling Wojcik he was “too good at your review work.”

After that fact was made public by this column, Wojcik got him the go-ahead to continue doing what he had been doing…ALLOWING him to give them free publicity far in excess of what they had been generating themselves to that point.

So fast forward to two weeks ago, where Ross Forman called and let Wojcik know his laptop was not going to be allowed in due to a “new policy”. Wojcik went to the show, figuring that he could straighten out things as he had before. Meanwhile, the websites that use Wojcik’s reports reported this all over the place. Wojick went to the show, only to see three mainstream reporters who were there to cover Pacman’s debut, using laptops with wireless cards….using the same arrangement he had with TNA. Later that same evening, Wojcik got the same statement from Forman, although Forman wouldn’t tell Wojcik who was responsible.

I’ll say now what I said back in February: if I were an independent wrestling company that has illusions of being number two to WWE…. if I were a company that has pissed away millions upon millions of dollars…and who brought in football’s second most favorite felon, yet still drew some of their lowest ratings ever for the Pacman “debut” on IMPACT; along with continuing PPV buyrates that are two-tenths of WWE’s; I would get on my knees in the middle of Times Square, and kiss the ass of everyone that wanted to help me get out the word about my company wearing mint-flavored Chapstick if they wanted me to.

I damned sure would be pissing off someone like Alan, to the point that he’s pulled his reports from all his sites. Way to go, TNA…you’ve just lost coverage for your TV tapings on every website except Richard Trionfo’s PWinsider.com reports…even on Dave Meltzer’s Wrestling Observer.com website.

It gets better…there’s a former bigtime TNA fan…a fan on the level of an apologist, who is now organizing an “Ignore TNA Impact Initative”. No, folks, it isn’t me under a pseudonym, nor is it the above Wojcik.

Read this for yourself:

“…As you may or may not already be aware, there is a rapidly growing grass roots movement afoot among the internet wrestling fan community to boycott this Thursday’s Impact program, airing on 8/16.Dubbed the ‘Ignore Impact Initiative’, the approach and desired outcome is a positive one. The pro-active “voice of the people” is designed to send a clear, strong message to TNA management regarding widespread dissatisfaction over the recent booking trends and sharp swing back towards intelligence insulting, cheesy gimmickry and outright illogical marketing tactics. This, following an earlier summer series of shows where compelling wrestling based episodes were aired and tested – and without question proven beyond a shadow of doubt to garner consistently higher ratings for the promotion while offering itself as a true alternative for eager viewers.

This viral word-of-mouth boycott has quickly generated an amazingly strong reaction among thousands of frustrated wrestling fans and is spreading as we speak to thousands more. Starting within the talkimpact.com community on the evening of 8/15, the movement has within literally less than a 24 hour period spiked significant net traffic and publicity for the cause. This morning found multiple sports and wrestling hotlines, fan blogs and forums around the world discussing the crusade for change within TNA Wrestling.

We have received word that several people involved with the Nashville based promotion are on board ‘off the record’ and strongly supportive of this initiative for positive change within TNA creative.”

Yup, sure looks like TNA has the pulse of its fanbase.

So, as a public service, here’s the TNA Master of Media directions manual:

1) Piss off fans who spend THEIR time and THEIR money to post items on dozens of websites to get over TNA.

2) Get other fans mad enough that they start online mvements to boycott your flagship TV show.

3) Dismiss all online reports that don’t genuflect at the altar of TNA as writers “being on the WWE payroll”. Apparently my mail carrier in suburban South Jersey is still pocketing my checks. US Post Office security still hasn’t gotten me my checks yet. Guess Alan Wojcik should start looking for his as well.

4) Dismiss critical fans at the live shows in Orlando by getting into “seeing the black helicopters coming paranoia” mode, and claiming critical fans are no more than “smart marks trying to take over the show”.

5) Fire workers who are critical of your company to the online media.

Matt Bentley’s contract recently expired, with the cause for his release termed to be to criticism of TNA on a recent episode of an online wrestling show. Seems Bentley acknowledged the poor morale PWBTS talked about months ago, owing to original TNA talent being upset that former WWE guys were getting bigger pushes. The most important comments may well have been the Bentley statement that “he has never been tested for drugs by TNA, nor does he know of anyone who has”.

So much for Dixie Carter’s comments about their wonderful drug testing program. I wonder how she plans to deal with a recent demand by a Congressional Committee that TNA provide information on their plan? Perhaps she’ll try the “it’s confidential” routine again.

By the way, in the future, if I get any snotty e-mails from TNA of the type I mentioned some months ago (the e-mail from one of their public personalities)… from here on they get printed in full with e-mail addresses and headers shown; just as I warn anyone sending e-mails can be done right on the main page of my PWBTS.com website. If someone chooses to embarass themselves in private, they have fair warning that they’ll be embarassing themselves in public, too.

Until next time…

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