The War For #2

Here we are in 2016, and of course the wonderful world of wrestling has an all-out war between a few companies for the right to be #2 to Vince McMahon’s billion dollar empire known as the WWE. While TNA, Ring Of Honor, and New Japan Pro Wrestling fight to see who is the true #2 behind WWE, the debate is getting heated by the minute. Here is my full analysis of this all-out war for #2.

While TNA has been the complete laughingstock of professional wrestling in recent years, the promotion is getting a little bit better in recent months, due in part of their current talent depth. While most TNA fans make the claim they are the #2 promotion in the world due to being tops against the rest of the competition in regards of the ratings numbers and distribution sales, others find this factually incorrect to say the least. While I have said that TNA uses WWE rejects as big names in an attempt to gain viewers, they hardly create their own stars. I’ve seen them bring in some independent names to help bring some viewers to their new cable home Pop (Formerly known as TV Guide Channel aka Prevue Channel), and it worked out well for now. TNA, with a television presence in the world but with zero pay-per-views and TV tapings at a slow pace, it isn’t helping matters for them in the long run. There was a long period when they were #2 in the US, but nowadays they aren’t. But they are still #2 in the US in regards to its fanbase and TV exposure. Let’s hope that TNA learns how to create stars on their own, not rely on WWE rejects.

Ring Of Honor may not have any time slots nationally, but they a solid fanbase and a roster mixed with young talent and veteran wrestlers. ROH has a solid online presence, and its current partnership with NJPW will be the X-Factor in this battle for #2. While I say this about Ring Of Honor, they know how to create stars instead of bringing in TNA or WWE misfits. Sinclair Broadcasting, which owns ROH, has the financial means to make them the premier #2 in the world in regards to the way they create their own stars and online presence. Let’s just leave it at that.

NJPW on the other hand has the second largest in attendance and revenue and is becoming a force in the international market. Since 1972, NJPW is a world renowned organization with the second best attendance records in wrestling history and the second best revenue numbers, and that’s saying something. While TNA apologists still make the claim that TNA is still #2 based on the talent depth that they have, NJPW  is #2 based on the revenue, attendance and an international audience watching the shoes on their streaming service and on AXS TV in the United States. They are the best in the world regarding the talent depth and the marketability. The facts speak for themselves, that the majority of fans say that NJPW has the better product than WWE and TNA combined.

The better product with the better reach has the opportunity to build their brand a whole lot better. With NJPW being the better product, this column might offend the TNA sheep. But I have to be honest here, I refuse to think that TNA is better than NJPW. It’s improving, I’ll give them that. ROH too, but in order to be competitive, they’ll need a bigger TV deal. But that doesn’t change the fact that NJPW is the best thing out there.

But the fact remains; who will come out on top? That is the big question.

You can follow me on Twitter @matthewhollie as well as The Barbwire Blog’s official accounts:
Twitter: @BarbwireBlog
Instagram: @barbwireblog


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