Ladies and gentlemen, boys and girls, children of all-ages...I've come to a startling discovery. Vincent Kennedy McMahon is the mastermind behind the absolute shit-show that is Total Nonstop Action.
Now please bear with me here. I realize that, on the surface, this sounds like the crackpot theory to end all crackpot theories, but I think I’m onto something.
Picture It: It’s late 2001 and Vince is realizing that since he’s put ECW and WCW out of business, there is absolutely no competition. The business as a whole is cooling off and all he’s hearing is how disappointed people are in the product. Vince—being the lunatic that he is—cannot handle this kind of criticism, especially not when he won the motherf’n Monday night wars.
So what’s an eccentric quasi-billionaire to do? Well, by golly, he’s going to create his own f’n competition. He thought about reviving WCW and that died on the table. So he brought in the nWo and that didn’t get over. He orchestrated the brand split, but no one is buying the whole "Raw vs Smackdown" thing as real competition.
This leaves Vince with one alternative, start a new company.
Vince—calling on the powers of the black arts—convinces the Jerry and Jeff Jarrett to team up with the NWA to launch a promotion. A very, very small promotion that can’t quite get on TV yet, you know, because there’s certainly no batshit crazy billionaire funding it off the books. *WINK* After a couple years of gaining traction—thanks to old WCW stars and old WWE stars who Vince just happens to want nothing to do with—TNA gets a television slot.
In time, the company gets some more funding and brings in more stars and raises its profile little by little.
Kurt Angle — a Vince McMahon favorite — who is on pace to kill himself with drugs and alcohol is released from the WWE and magically signs with TNA making it appear as if they don’t give two shits about his health and well-being and he proceeds to draw negative press for TNA for years on end.
Sting — the WCW franchise — returns and continues to be put over younger talent time and time again and eventually becomes a poor imitation of Jim Carrey doing a poor imitation of Heath Ledger’s Joker. Also he ends up wrestling in a t-shirt.
Christian — someone Vince never thought much of outside of tag team action — gets to waltz into TNA and become a World Champion and a legitimate main eventer on the mic and in the ring.
Other interesting roster additions over the years:
Drug addled brothers Jeff and Matt Hardy both get contracts and VIP treatment (until Matt Hardy proves to be too big of a trainwreck for even TNA to put up – Jeff on the other hand gets involved in drug trafficking and still gets to be a multi-time World Champion).
Scott Steiner finally wears out his welcome in WWE and quickly finds work, and a stupid f’n chest tattoo, in TNA.
The Dudley Boyz – an act that’s grown beyond stale in WWE – show up and continue to use the exact same gimmick and characters in TNA.
Booker T, fed up with the WWE hierarchy is out of work for about 30 seconds before he’s winning titles in TNA.
Full-up on booze, debt, and personal problems, the "Nature Boy" Ric Flair joins the company and says "aw fuck it" to the big, emotional sendoff the WWE gave him before jumping back in the ring to embarrass himself and TNA.
Mick Foley — years removed from being a relevant in-ring performer — wins the World Title.
Rob Van Dam who left the WWE b/c of his love for the ganja comes in and wins the World Title in a squash proving that drug testing is for chumps.
The Nasty Boys are still alive and on my television for some ungodly reason.
The petrified remains of Scott Hall and X-Pac appear on TV to reform the nWo with Hulk Hogan and Kevin Nash.
Eric Bischoff and Hogan are brought in to make the TNA a viable competitor and proceed to run it further into the ground.
Meanwhile, tons of worthwhile—but not WWE-style—young talent wastes the prime years of their careers wrestling for a third-rate organization.
Doesn’t this sound like exactly the type of thing Vince would orchestrate?
Think about it. All of the guys with personal problems who are going to get the media in a tizzy land in TNA. Guys that Vince viewed as "meh" like Kennedy and Christian get to win World Titles in TNA showing that WWE’s mid-carders are better than TNA’s best. The guys with the biggest egos who clashed with Vince (see: Hogan, Hulk and Bischoff, Eric) get to "play boss" and show that trying to re-create storylines from 15 years ago doesn’t work.
It’s genius. It makes Vince look like he’s the greatest promoter of all-time. It makes WWE look like the major leagues and TNA look like the minor leagues, no — scratch that — it makes TNA look like f’n little league.
Then as the company is going out of business and bleeding money — Vince gets to be all, nah…we don’t want any of your talent. Sure, they’d all sign for $50/night, a fistful of Aspirin, and a KFC Double Down at this point…but fuck ‘em. I’m Vince McMahon, I don’t need your best guys…b/c even if I brought ‘em in, they’d all just job out to Zack Ryder for a month before being wished well on their future endeavors.
Vince pretty much has to be behind TNA, right?!