With NXT landing on USA Network and AEW premiering on TNT, there have been lots of headlines regarding promotions landing new TV deals. But another one that has flown under the radar is Impact moving to AXS TV after Anthem Sports & Entertainment acquired a majority stake of the company.
Impact wrestler Michael Elgin talked about any pressure on the company ahead of Bound for Glory and Impact’s premiere on AXS TV on October 29 when he spoke to Wrestling Inc. on our WINCLY podcast.
“Yes and no,” Elgin replied when asked if there’s any pressure. “The only reason I say no is because ever since I laced up a pair of boots, I went out there with the mentality of do or die. I have to perform at my highest level possible to be brought back to a promotion or have a crowd talk about me. This is just that same thought process. Obviously, this is a little bigger deal because since I’ve debuted with Impact, we are moving to a bigger network and Bound For Glory is a huge PPV. But to me, if you don’t treat every last match or performance [as do or die], whether it’s on TV or PPV, that’s when you become complacent. So I always try to go into every opportunity as if it’s a do or die situation and BFG is no different for me.”
There were some rumblings that Anthem was looking to purchase AXS before it happened, but Elgin admits that he found out about the deal and Impact moving to AXS TV at nearly the same time as everyone else.
“I will be honest ? they kept it very tight-knit. I found out 15 minutes before it was announced on Twitter from an email that was sent out by the company. Other than that, I found out when everyone else found out,” revealed Elgin.
“I think it’s huge news as Impact has an amazing TV product and the fact that we’re entering a TV station that now allows more homes to see it I think is great.”
Steve Harvey was mentioned in the press release as he is an investor with Anthem and Elgin was asked if Harvey could potentially get involved with Impact.
“Man, I just hope we get a little wrestling action on Family Feud [laughs],” said Elgin.
This current era of pro wrestling has gotten labeled the Wednesday Night Wars with NXT and AEW going head-to-head. On a broader scale, there is also talk of all of the various wrestling promotions being in war with each other and Elgin was asked if it feels like a war on the inside.
“I don’t think so. But to me, I’ve never looked at it like that from a personal level. I was never in WCW or WWF when they were battling, but all I focus on is how can I help the promotion I’m with succeed? The best way I can do that is to be the best performer I’m physically able to be,” stated Elgin. “I just work at that and try to bring other people up. If we’re in a war and we win, great. But as long as while the battles are happening and people are focusing on what I’m doing within that position then I’m happy.”
Elgin takes on Naomichi Marufuji tonight as part of Impact Wrestling’s Bound For Glory card in Chicago, IL. Impact Wrestling begins airing this coming Tuesday on AXS TV at 8/7c. Elgin’s full interview with Wrestling Inc aired as part of today’s episode of our WINCLY podcast. It can be heard via the embedded audio player at the bottom of this post. In it Elgin discusses his history with Naomichi Marufuji ahead of their Bound For Glory match, when Impact talent was told about move to AXS TV, Steve Harvey’s involvement in the deal, Kylie Rae working Impact’s “All Glory” event, what top indie talent he’s keeping an eye on at “All Glory” and more.