I’m not ashamed, or afraid, to say that I’m not a very big fan of TNA Wrestling.  I’m not alone on this, either.  I mean, I WANT to like what they do, I WANT to support them, but most times they give me, and many other wrestling fans, zero reasons to like or support them.  Probably the biggest reason why is the handling of their own World Championship.

A little history lesson for those who don’t know, or don’t remember.  When TNA formed, it was an affiliate of the National Wrestling Alliance.  Yes, that NWA, where WCW and ECW got their jumping off points from.  TNA used the NWA World Championship as their major title until 2007, when the two companies ended their agreement.  Since then, many of the TNA World Championship reigns have made little to no sense.  The biggest offender is current World Champion Bobby Roode.

I have nothing against Roode as a performer.  I think he deserves to be a World Champion, but TNA booking has made his reign as champion one of the weakest of any championship reigns ever for any wrestling promotion.  Let’s go back to over the summer.  TNA held a seemingly never-ending  series of matches to determine a number one contender to face the TNA World Champion at TNA’s biggest PPV (TNA’s equivalent of WrestleMania), Bound For Glory.  Bobby Roode was determined to be the contender to face Kurt Angle for the title.  Typical TNA fashion, the match has a screwy ending where Roode has a foot under the ropes, while Angle is holding the middle rope as the ref counts to three.  A very anticlimactic end to a months-long build for a championship match.

It gets better.

At the next set of tapings for TNA Impact, Roode’s tag team partner James Storm beats Angle in about a minute to become new TNA World Champion.  For those keeping track, that’s months of building up Roode to be the “next guy,” only to lose screwy, and have his tag team partner win in a short match WITH ABSOLUTELY NO HYPE!  IWC explodes, Eric Bischoff brags about it (possibly a topic for a later article), and fans have another reason to hate TNA.

But our story continues.  Two weeks later, at the next set of Impact tapings, Roode beats Storm by smashing a beer bottle over his head, thus turning heel, and finally becoming TNA World Champion.  But, again, on a taped show with ZERO build or hype.  So that’s two title changes in two weeks at TV tapings.  Not PPV, but a TV taping.  For free.

Roode’s first PPV defense of the title was at Turning Point, which was just two weeks removed from Roode winning the title.   He defeated AJ Styles in true heel fashion, with a handful of trunks during the pin.  They would have a rematch at the next PPV, Final Resolution, in a 30-minute Iron Man Match.  That match was ruled a draw, as they both finished with three falls apiece.  And just recently at Genesis, Roode got himself disqualified against Jeff Hardy.

That’s ZERO clean finishes in three PPV matches in a reign which started with no fanfare on free television.

And we’re supposed to believe this guy is a credible World Champion?  I know he’s being booked as “cowardly heel champion who wins at any cost”, but World Champions are where they are because they are the best at what they do.  Sure, heel champions don’t always win clean, but a strong finish here or there would be helpful, especially after everything and everyone he went through to get the initial title match.  It just doesn’t make sense to try to tell us “This guy just spent three months beating everyone in the company, now he can’t beat anyone a whole two months later.”  This is where TNA loses a lot of people, myself included.

But maybe I’m wrong.  Maybe TNA will turn this around and make Roode a credible World Champion.  Maybe almost three whole months into his reign isn’t enough time to fairly judge how good of a champion he is.  Or maybe it’s just TNA failing the fans again.  You decide.

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Another IWC Jerk is a self-proclaimed pro wrestling guru.  He can point out Parts Unknown on a map.  You probably can’t.

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