Source: Jon Robinson of ESPN.com
Former TNA World Tag Team Champion Christopher Daniels recently talked to ESPN.com regarding a variety of really interesting topics. Included in the interview was a discussion of how iMPACT Wrestling has grown from a PPV-only product to a primetime show on Spike TV, the differences between TNA today versus 10 years ago, the differences between WWE and TNA, and the impact that Hulk Hogan and Eric Bischoff have had on the company. There are a bunch of other topics also covered in the interview, which you can read by clicking here. Highlights of the interview are below. Enjoy!
On TNA Growing from PPVs to FOX Sports Net to Spike
The first couple of years when we were doing pay-per-views on Wednesdays out of Nashville, there was a lot of talk that the company wasn’t going to last because we had a different business plan. We didn’t have television in place; it was just pay-per-views. But in the locker room, we didn’t feel that. We knew we had a good locker room; it was just a matter of consistently putting out great product. Because of that, we went from Nashville down to Orlando to do the show for Fox Sports Net, and finally for Spike. Slowly but surely, we’ve taken the baby steps forward of going from a taped show to a live show, going from Saturday nights to Thursday nights, and going from outside of prime time to inside of prime time. All of these things, all of these steps we’ve been able to take forward because of the talent in the ring and the ways we’re keeping fans interested in what we’re doing.
On the Biggest Difference in TNA Today vs. 10 Years Ago
I think that with of all the hard work of guys like AJ Styles and James Storm and Bobby Roode, we’ve really opened up the eyes of wrestling fans to where it became conceivable that guys like Kurt Angle and Christian Cage and the Dudley Boyz and Hulk Hogan could come to TNA and make it a better product. If it wasn’t for the work of the originals, guys that left WWE wouldn’t have come to TNA; they would’ve just went on to do their own thing. But because those guys saw the spirit of the homegrown talent, they saw that they could help build and grow something that could be an alternative to what WWE is putting out.
On the Differences Between TNA and WWE
The TNA roster is made up of guys who are hungry and who are looking to make their break on the national scene, who may or may not have had that opportunity in WWE. What I think differentiates us is I feel like we’re a little more action-packed. I feel like we have the most talented roster in professional wrestling, and we have guys like Bobby Roode, James Storm, and Kurt Angle, then we have myself and my partner Frankie Kazarian, and I feel like we’re the best tag team in the business right now, and to me, TNA puts more of a priority on the in-ring action. I think you’ll see a lot more great wrestling in TNA than anywhere else in the world.
On Eric Bischoff and Hulk Hogan Joining iMAPCT Wrestling
They’ve brought their own creativity to it. Eric and Hulk have their own ideas about how we should change the presentation of the show, whether that’s backstage vignettes or bringing parts of reality television into our presentation. There’s also more long-term planning involved now than there was two or three years ago in terms of our storylines and characterizations, and I for one, am very happy to work with this particular creative team. I feel like they’ve given myself and Frankie Kazarian a lot of opportunity to grow, and we’ve taken that opportunity to become one of the more entertaining parts of our television show.