Long Time TNA Executive Departs
TNA Executive Vice President Andy Barton recently left the company, after working with Dixie Carter for nearly 20 years. He began working under Carter when she ran a PR company starting in 1996, and came along with her to TNA in 2002, where he’s stayed ever since. TNA made the following statement:
“We wish TNA executive Andy Barton all the best as he pursues a new opportunity. Glad to have CSO Eric Sherman on board as we look to build on our powerful global brand, continue our rapid international growth and expand onto emerging platforms.”
EC3 Discusses World Title Victory
Ethan Carter III discussed winning the TNA World Championship in a recent interview with the This Is Awesome Podcast:
“Everything I’ve ever been through, every stupid personal or professional hell I’ve ever had to overcome, it made it all worth it. I’m very fortunate. I hate using the word blessed, because people use #blessed way too much. But for one day, I can say I was #blessed.
“Watching it personally, I had a nice soiree. My girlfriend hooked us up with a party and a bunch of people came by. What was cool about it, as much as people who support either her or I, our friends, they not huge wrestling fans. They check it out from time to time. Kind of fans we need more of, which is mainstream people checking it out from time to time.
“You know, again, when we talk about smart fans and credibility, or messing with the finisher or outside interference. The hook, line, and sinker with every little thing we did and every part of that story we told, like, it was mostly clean, but I’m still kind of a dirt bag because I still need a little help — the stuff with Tyrus.
“I guess, a guy whose never had a wrestling match in his life who can give out stars can say, ‘Hey, that’s typical TNA.’ When you watch the reaction of the people we try to get, and they are hooked, line and sinker, and they are buying into this and seeing it unfold, it was kind of an out of body experience.
“Kurt’s a Hall of Famer in every company he’s been in, let’s not forget that. But I mean, dude, whoa. Like, whoa. Like you said, we grew up watching Kurt. It’s very, very rare you have the opportunity to have your dream match. And I think it’s even more rare that it happens to be for a world title. It’s surreal.
“You know, I’ve had that match a thousand times in my head. I remember doing German suplexes and then Angle Slams in my backyard, locking in the ankle lock. Next thing you know, I’ll take about eighteen of them…I don’t remember because they all hit me in the head. Withstand that, then defeat him with a wrestling hold. Ha! Pin! What? Out of control.”
Mike Tenay Remains Optimistic
Mike Tenay remains optimistic regarding the future of TNA. He told In This Room:
“There was the chance, when we got going, to take this to another level. But realistically, when you look back at the fact that we were – in terms of the wrestling business model – doing it completely backwards. We were running a pay-per-view show without having the regular television show to drive people to the pay-per-view … You look at that business model and you just say ‘How the heck could that thing succeed?’ Fortunately, even after a little stumble after the first couple of months, we received the new investors: the Carter family got involved. They were able to keep us going in that environment … In spite of all [the] negatives, we were able to attract Spike TV. Gosh, if you look back, you would have to say it was a long shot for a company that started off as just a pay-per-view company, for a company that had had its obituary written on many, many occasions. It’s one of those things that we think about every year at the anniversary time and it’s definitely one of the things that I was thinking about this past week and this past weekend, when we celebrated our 13th year in business, which is just amazing.”
Tenay also discussed the creative decision of using former WWE stars over independent talent:
“Obviously you’re going to need a mix, going forward. That’s the first thing that you have to think about. I don’t think it’s great to have a roster that’s overloaded with veterans, and I think at the same time it’s very difficult to start with a group of independent names that haven’t really achieved a lot on the national stage.The perfect mix, and as I look and see what we’ve done in the past year plus, I don’t think that TNA gets enough credit. The fact that we’re able to maintain a roster of the established people … and what we’ve been able to do in terms of bringing new young talent to the forefront … and combining them in an effort where you have, obviously, the veterans there to give the rub to that new young talent, which you’re always going to have to do.”