Honorable Mention: Unique Rules
– Back in the heyday of IMPACT, when it was TNA, there was a rule that stated if you got counted out or DQ’ed, you’d lose the title. Bring back that rule. Bring back time limits for matches while we’re at it. Presenting it as a sport is not a bad idea, and adds so much more significance to moments. The Broken Hardy and Demon Bunny storylines would be fewer and farther between, but that doesn’t mean the gimmicks wouldn’t still have legs. Just no more cheesy “demonic powers”. Characters weren’t stifled during that era either, as Abyss, Monty Brown, Raven, Team Canada and others flourished with a more realist driven product.
Bring in an Actor
– This seems like a no brainer, right? AEW, ROH and WWE have done it with Stephen Amell, David Arquette did with various indy promotions before shutting it down for a while after nearly dying. Now it looks like the original Green Ranger is getting in the ring as well, with an indy promotion out of Texas called Laredo Wrestling Alliance. While some fans aren’t too ecstatic about actors stepping in the ring, most others are open to it; as long as it’s the right name. No, people wouldn’t want to see Sheldon Cooper’s actor Jim Parsons get in the ring, but Terry Crews? Why not?
Cross Promote a Super-Fight Card
– This one makes sense, because it already worked. Last April, Lucha Underground and IMPACT got together to do a joint show in New Orleans that was met with rave reviews. Another version of that kind of event, maybe with Major League Wrestling this time could generate the same kind of interest. Another idea is to do with Pro Wrestling NOAH, whom the company has worked with in the past. However, with NOAH currently under new ownership, who knows if they would even want to.
Bring Back Unexpected Big Names
– IMPACT actually has a pretty deep history at this point. Now in it’s 17th year of existence, the brand has numerous names to call on to be brought back into the fold. Names like Monty Brown, Raven, Scott Steiner, Josh Barnett and others are out there, free to show up. I think even Sting is free to do so as well, though he would obviously just be an on screen character and not a worker. What about Bob Backlund? There are so many iconic names who have come through or been developed by the brand; why not reach out to some of them? Hell, add Shane Douglas back to the broadcast team as a backstage interviewer. It’s not like Melissa Santos is lighting up the screen. The most obvious one kind of plays into two categories, Keep reading for who I mean.
Transition an Athlete Full Time to Wrestler
– Even though he’s 40 now, I still think Brian Urlacher would be a cool sight to see in an IMPACT ring. With guys like Daniel Cormier, Cain Velázquez, Stephan Bonner, Shayna Baszler, Frank Mir and others either toying with or full on transitioning into pro wrestling later into their 30’s, there’s ample opportunity to dust off an MMA fighter past his prime, give him a crash course in training with Scott D’Amore at the BCW school, then give him a bunch of short matches to put him over. Go recruit former NFL’ers like DeAngelo Williams. who already wrestled in the company or his good buddy, former Pro Bowler Gary Barnidge. I’d even take 45 year old Tito Ortiz! Just get someone with credibility to be around full time. If you can recruit talent from pro sports, then you will get more mainstream coverage; which is what the brand needs.
Turn Brian Cage Into a Powerhouse Champion ala Goldberg
– If Cage were to beat Johnny Impact in a minute, then go on to hold the belt for a year – with very little opposition – then Cage would become must see t.v. Must like Goldberg was back in the late 90’s, it wouldn’t be about the work-rate of his match, but more so the insanity of it. What wild thing would he do this time. Part of Goldberg’s appeal wasn’t his work, but the destruction. No one remembers his matches in the WWE, but we all remember the Elimination Chamber moment where he kicked the pod into pieces, or when he speared 3 Minute Warner. The there was the time Goldberg speared Nunzio into, and back from another reality. That’s what Cage needs to do.
Bring Back Company Specific Match Types
– The company got buzz when they aired the third Barbed Wire Massacre match, LAX vs. oVe on Twitch. The match was violent, bloody and amazing. Barbed Wire Massacre is a great match type that shouldn’t be over done, but have value. King of the Mountain may of been funky, but it was original. We’ve also only just seen the return of the Ultimate X match. Why not other concepts, like Elevation X? Bring back Lockdown, and do a tables match, a first blood match and fuck it, go nuts; and Ultimate-X Cage Match. Because what’s stopping you?
Put the X-Title on Pentagon and Turn the Division Red With Blood
– While Cage should be the main player going forward, the X-Division title needs to be addressed. Adorn the belt around Pentagon’s waist and expand the rules of the division. Originally a work-rate title for the promotion during a time when the wrestlers on top weren’t that good or were past their prime. Now the belt doens’t have the same importance, because it doens’t serve the same need. Make it a true “no-limit” title; eliminate DQ’s, count out’s and the like, and let Pentagon have a hardcore run with it.
Start an Inter-promotional War With the Women
– With SHINE, WSU, Shimmer, Women of Wrestling’s revival and Japan’s Stardom, there are plenty of female-centric women’s companies to do this with. You could do it as a top talent vs. top talent; like Taya vs. Mercedes in a winner-take-all title match. You could do it as part of a revival of the Knockouts tag team titles. Hell, you could just send Scarlett Bordeaux to WOW and have her accuse them all of being ugly, prompting the WOW women to invade IMPACT and beat her up. It’s an idea that’s been done before with various promotions, but never once featuring just women, on a major stage in the U.S.
Get Someone No One Would Think About
– I never thought I’d see the day where men like PCO and Glacier were popping crowds. Though, that’s exactly what’s happening. Novelty acts from years gone by all of a sudden have second life; mostly due to the lack of interesting characters today. What if one day Eddie Edwards is getting beaten up by Eli Drake and Dan Severn comes out. Another name, as hinted at above, would be Ken Shamrock. He’s both an alum and unexpected, so I think he qualifies for both categories. Back to Eddie, could you imagine the shooting that would go on between a return to form Edwards and Shamrock? it’s not like it’d be hard, Shamrock is wrestling again. Why not do it? Hell, have Shamrock show up and fight Johnny Impact or even better yet; Killer Kross.
Put the X-Division Championship on Tessa Blanchard
– This should only qualify for two women in the history of IMPACT, Gail Kim in her prime, and Tessa Blanchard. Jordynne Grace is fantastic, though not the kind of wrestler you’d expect in the division, but she could work as an alternative. Blanchard is the only woman in wrestling, right now, that I think could keep up with the X-Division. With the belt needing to be redefined, and my earlier idea of opening up the rules for the belt; why not allow it to be defended across gender lines? Make it clear, the IMPACT World is for men, and the Knockouts is for women. Yet the X-Division? It’s Not About Weight Limits, but About No Limits.