Prior to the press conference beginning there were approximately 6,000 fans logged on to the UStream video. Of those fans, about 2,000 opted to jump online onto the “slow chat” that is moderated by the folks at TNA. As the press conference began, TNA turned off the public count of how many fans were watching the UStream video, but logging in 6,000 or so ten to fifteen minutes before the actual press conference started is pretty good.
The press conference began 13 minutes late. During the wait, the TNA moderator informed the fans: “We are working on tech diff. will be their soon.” Whatever that means.
Mike Tenay welcomes the media and the fans watching on TNAWrestling.com. He lets everyone know that there will be a Q&A period after the principals announcements. Then he introduces Dixie Carter who walks out to the iMPACT! theme song.
Carter says that TNA has gone from “an impossible dream to an amazing reality.” She details how the January 4th live iMPACT! was a major success for TNA and how they peaked at 3.4 million viewers that night. “After seeing those results, TNA and Spike TV saw the potential of what could happen if they move iMPACT! to Monday nights.” She then announces that on Monday, March 8th, TNA iMPACT! will begin airing on Monday nights at 9:00pm EST.
Carter reminds everyone how when TNA signed Hulk Hogan they said they were going to turn the wrestling world upside down. Today, Carter says they are making that happen and how Hulk Hogan is the little bit of rocket fuel the company needed to make big waves. She then introduces Hulk Hogan.
Hogan says that this is amazing and overwhelming to him. He says that he’s been around for a while and that he had no idea that the TNA family would respond so quickly and make amazing things happen. He says that “it’s game time. Game on.” He says that he’s never been around a company before that has had so many positive things going on. Says that 3 – 4 years ago if you would have told him that in the “twilight” of his career he would be around such great people, he wouldn’t have believed it.
He says that the old, barbaric wrestling mentality is gone from the TNA Wrestling locker room. He thanks Dixie Carter, Bob Carter, and the TNA family. Hogan says that the reason for this announcement is not him, rather it is the foundation of the company that made this possibility. He says that TNA is one family, one team prepared to make this thing happen.
Put your seatbelt on, the ride is really getting ready to take off now.
Question & Answer Period:
How long do you foresee this happening?
– Carter: We see this happening forever. We have no plans to do anything else. We want to make this as big as possibly can be. We will be going live on March 8th and taping some episodes and going live on other.
Why the decision to go from 9pm to 11pm instead of 8pm to 10pm?
– Carter: We could have done either one.
– Hogan: From a wrestler’s point of view, you’re going to prove that you’re the best and you’re going to get into a fight. Give the fans a choice to decide who is the best. If he was a wrestler, he’d want to go head-to-head with what they call their competition. Carter may have some reason to switch the time period around, but from a wrestler’s point of view you want to go head to head.
Question for Hulk Hogan – Thoughts on the new Monday Night Wars.
– Hogan: Was at WCW when it took them about 6 months to get out in the live venues and become dominant. It’s not a competition any more. TNA has better talent, TNA has better matches. This company is better at everything they do.
– Carter: When you say a war, a war is fought over a long period of time. Our goals have not changed from the beginning, we wanted to be our competitor’s third rated show and we did that. Now we want to beat our competitor’s second rated show.
Were there talks for taking iMPACT! to three hours?
– Carter: No, but there were talks of additional programming.
What type of reaction do you expect from Vince McMahon and WWE?
– Hogan: I expect no reaction because they don’t acknowledge anybody else in the wrestling world. Hogan says he knows that the WWE talent is cheering TNA on. He says that TNA gives the talent an option and that WWE is almost like a monopoly. He says that the corporate side of the building must be panicking in WWE.
What are Spike TV’s expectations of ratings?
– Carter: We believe that the ratings will grow over time. If TNA can have the type of success that they had on January 4th, they’d be happy. The real winners in all of this are the wrestling fans and that Carter and Hogan are having a lot of fun doing all of this stuff. She wants to make wrestling fans proud to be wrestling fans again.
There are no more questions, but before Mike Tenay closes up the press conference Hulk Hogan says that when he used to work at “another place” each day felt like it took forever. The people at TNA love being at work and he doesn’t feel like there should be a parameter put on ratings or quotas or anything like that for iMPACT! He would be afraid to predict anything because the guys are raising the bar every time they come out in the iMPACT! Zone and that everything is happening fast at TNA.
Mike Tenay thanks Hulk Hogan and Dixie Carter and the fans watching at TNAWrestling.com. He reminds everyone that iMPACT! moves to Mondays on March 8th and the feed ends.
TNAStars.com Contests & Promotions: Check out what we’re giving away! ›››