TNA, through its very name—it is a pun on T*ts And Ass’, if you weren’t aware—has always been something of a joke. It doesn’t matter if it is no longer named TNA anymore. Impact Wrestling, Global Force Wrestling Presents Impact Wrestling, whatever; the t*ts in charge, sipping from an apparently cursed chalice, will always, always make asses of themselves.
Even when promoting state-of-the-art attractions, performed incredibly by influential talents, the company cultivated a laughable stigma. As thirsty for that osmosis WWE credibility as JR is for Kaitlyn on Twitter—“Slobberknocker” was a very apt catchphrase, in hindsight—TNA ritually invited scorn. AJ Styles cosplayed as Ric Flair. The former New Age Outlaws became the Voodoo Kin Mafia, and offered one million dollars to Vince McMahon as encouragement to send Triple H and Shawn Michaels to Orlando. Dixie Carter actually froze the funds.
As the mother and father of TNA, Carter and Russo were about as effective as the Brobergs.
Much of the stink resulted from Vince Russo’s catastrophic stint with the booking pen—and even when it was prised from his grasp, he remained on board in a clandestine consultant role. The company kept this from Spike TV, because Spike TV came to detest the man for reasons that should be obvious.
TNA wasn’t the only dumbsh*t Vince Russo acronym. In 2004, he returned in an onscreen capacity as the Director of Authority. So that’s ‘DOA’, then: a very fitting metaphor for the company itself.
Somehow, the ghost of Russo’s ineptitude still haunts it…