For years, the promotion known as TNA fought to be seen as an alternative to WWE, a haven for wrestling fans who had grown disillusioned with what WWE was providing. And at times, they did manage to succeed, putting on well-received shows, creating new stars, and they even kept the company afloat for over thirteen years despite a variety of obstacles, many of them self-inflicted. Unfortunately, for every step TNA took forward, it seemed like they would do something that caused them to slide two or three steps backwards, an unsustainable model no matter how you look at it, especially for a company trying to compete with a multi-million-dollar behemoth of an opponent like WWE. The mistakes of TNA are many, and these are the ones that helped ensure that not only would they never be even close to competing directly with WWE, but also seriously jeopardized any chance they may have had of surviving.
12. The Name On The Marquee
The worst thing TNA did, right out of the gate, which repeatedly prevented them from being taken seriously, was name their company TNA. Sure, they constantly did their little song-and-dance about how it stood for “Total Nonstop Action”, but when it got right down to it, they were a wrestling company that deliberately decided to use a dirty pun as their name, in order to pretend that they were edgy and cool. As a result, they instantly made any dealings with legitimate businesses much harder than they needed to be. What company wants to sponsor something that sounds like a porn magazine? What TV networks would want that name airing on their channels (the answer eventually turned out to be Spike TV, back when it was deep in its “we’re the manly channel for men, which means boobs and guns and curse words” phase that had a similar grade-school mentality as TNA)? Did they think ESPN was ever going to utter the words “TNA” in anything but a derogatory fashion, no matter how many baseball players and race car drivers they got to appear on Impact? For years, fans hoped that the next re-branding of the company would erase the name and change it to something more befitting a serious wrestling promotion, and every time, they were denied.