You never know who loves pro-wrestling.
According to Jim Ross, country music singer Toby Keith is such a big fan of sports entertainment that he was ready to cut a check and purchase Total Nonstop Action (TNA) Wrestling. Not only that, but the four-time American Music Award winner and Billboard’s “Country Artist of the Decade” wanted good ol’ JR to help him run the business.
“My Oklahoma friend Toby Keith had a legit interest in buying TNA in the past and he and I discussed my potential involvement of which I was interested working with Toby,” Ross wrote on in a recent blog post on his website. “He was ready to write a check but he had to have full control with no restrictions regarding creative, etc. and that was not on the table.”
JR only revealed that, after sharing this news, he keeps hearing “more unsettling rumors out of Nashville” about the financial health of TNA and that, apparently, “a new investor or buyer is at play for the struggling company.”
“Without significant live-event revenue and a viable PPV component in the revenue mix, it will not be surprising to hear of any pro-wrestling company being in financial peril,” Ross wrote. “I hope that the eventual fate of TNA is much different than those within the company and others close to the matter are saying. Nonetheless, it is somewhat obvious that the next few months are going to be crucial in determining the future of the company.”
That being said, JR implored the promotion to rebrand itself in a complete overhaul from the product it’s currently known for.
“New name, new philosophy, new approach to their presentation,” Ross said, “based on the talents that they have to work with on a regular basis.”
One of those major talents, AJ Styles, left TNA after a decade with the company to make his WWE debut this past January.
Who knows if Keith and JR attempting to run the promotion is in the cards this time around? Here’s something to just throw out there: as he is still banned by WWE, would Hulk Hogan ever consider a return to TNA in an ownership role? He has received a windfall of money in the form of his $115 million win over Gawker in his privacy violation lawsuit, so maybe something can present itself.