An Old Dinosaur that’s Still Walking Amongst Us: the NWA

Good vs Evil; Face vs Heel; and fan favorites vs wrestlers that fans love to hate is what wrestling provides every Monday Night on World Wrestling Entertainment (WWE) Raw.

But I’m not here to talk about the WWE.

There was a time when the NWA was the king of the wrestling world, which was home to stars like Lou Thesz, Harley Race and Ric Flair.

During that era of wresting, wrestling was broken into several territories. These territories had hand-shake agreements not to wrestle and broadcast in each other’s territories.

Unfortunately, the dawn of the cable television era changed everything. It allowed Vince McMahon Jr. (WWF) and Jim Crockett Jr. (Mid Atlantic/Georgia Championship Wrestling) to build empires in the 80’s. In 1988 Jim Crockett was bought out by Ted Turner, creating WCW; thus putting an end to the NWA as we knew it.

The NWA is still around with small Independent promotions; such as, Vendetta Pro (California/Nevada), Smoky Mountain (eastern Tennessee) and Mid-South (western Tennessee) anchoring the NWA today.

Everything runs in cycles, and the NWA is on a twenty-five year downturn. The question is, will the NWA ever return to it’s former glory; and what will it take to get from where it is currently to back on top of the wrestling world?

Currently, the major problem is bulk of wrestling fans doesn’t know that the NWA is still in existence.

The NWA has an On Demand featuring classic matches from the Paul Boeshe library (Houston territory). It’s an OK revenue generator, but it can always be better, in terms of creating revenue. The content is tremendous; it features matches like Andre the Giant vs Harley Race, and so on.

What the On Demand truly lacks is current content; such as, every major championship should be featured on On Demand within 48 hours of a match. This would accomplish several things: 1: it allows the matches to be reviewed; 2: it allows for fans across the United States to watch these matches; 3: due to writers’ reviews, it allows for fans, that doesn’t know the NWA is still in existence to subscribe to On Demand; 4: it introduces the older fans to the new product and the newer fans to the older product.

Now this doesn’t mean that fans will start pouring in to buy NWA On Demand; however, it’s a start in the right direction.

The NWA needs to have a weekly Podcast promoting it’s current stars and upcoming events. Again, this doesn’t mean that fans will start pouring into events and buying merchandise.

Producing an NWA iPPV could go a long way towards generating revenue needed for getting the necessary equipment for television.

Television is mandatory; however, this is the toughest bridge to cross.

Getting on television will require content, or some sort of plan for syndication.

What I would ultimately do is chop up three to five matches, from across the alliance a week, and put it onto YouTube. Then look for sponsors to help generate revenue.

The other route could potentially be buying a warehouse and making it into a wrestling studio. This way they could fly wrestlers in, and knock out four episodes in a single night and ship the content to networks, or even Netflix.

There always is pride when a local guy makes it to the WWE or NJPW, but wouldn’t be even more special if that local guy from Smoky Mountain or Vendetta Pro headline a NWA event that is seen by millions on Pay Per View.

It may never become the king of wrestling again, but a man can dream, right?

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