Monday, October 2, 2017

Billy Corgan Has a 20 Year Plan for the National Wrestling Alliance

The future of wrestling?
Photo Credit: Gabriel Olsen/Getty Images
The saga of the National Wrestling Alliance has been an interesting one. Ever since it broke with Ted Turner's World Championship Wrestling, it has been passed around many different promotions and in several different iterations. Even WWE tried reviving it as a pet division designed to get Jim Cornette and various wrestlers over in the early Attitude Era. But any bit of resurgence peters out after a given amount of time for various reasons, mostly due to ego. The latest version saw Texas lawyer R. Bruce Tharpe try to consolidate mostly Southern promotions as an indie bloc that was at one point even associated with New Japan Pro Wrestling, but that didn't have long-term legs either. So "Sacho" sold the rights to Billy Corgan to a prevailing reaction of laughter from most people who were assed enough to have one.

Corgan is unabated, however, as he gave an interview with SI wrestling writer/Paul Levesque useful idiot Justin Barrasso. Corgan's quotes are couched in poor writing that doesn't even get the governing body's name right in the lede, but they're worth seeking out. He says a lot of right things but a few wrong ones, mainly that he's open to working with Anthem and Ed Nordholm, the current money-bleeding bozos in charge of NWA-TNA TNA Wrestling Global Force Wrestling Impact Wrestling. Despite the fact that people associated with that company still owe him money, Corgan seems open to working with the promotion that tripped over its dick into everything good its ever achieved, which honestly, given his history working for it, shows the textbook definition of insanity.

However, he offered up some good, if boilerplate, promises about long-term planning, needing to take time, and go for a much younger audience. The article notes the recent study that showed the average wrestling fan is aged at 57 years, which is a bigger sign of rot than any downturn in ratings, WWE Network subscribers, or revenue. The problem with all these great promises is he just sort of says what he needs to do with no specifics behind them outside of having current NWA Champion Tim Storm get his and the brand's name out there on Championship Wrestling from Hollywood. It's not like he's trying to patent cold fusion; he's trying to revive wrestling for youth using a brand name that means more to people on the wrong side of that average age than anyone in his demographic.

Of course, the most jarring thing Corgan says in his interview is his plan is 20 years in scope. That's insane given the current climate, although it's admirable that someone has a more realistic timetable in which they could compete with Vince McMahon's juggernaut. I'm not sure a plan like that is feasible to enact without guarantees that you have contingency money or a plan that will surefire bring younger fans into the fold. Like Beyond Wrestling promoter Denver Colorado said on Twitter, most people's 20 year plans are not to die.

I mean, if this whole thing succeeds, then it'll be a boon for wrestling, and Corgan has his head in the right place it seems. However, with few plans in concrete, forgive wrestling fans who know better to give him the benefit of the doubt.