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Spike Pins Content Deal With TNA

Pro-wrestling outfit TNA has
pinned down a multiyear extension with
Spike TV that could include additional
television projects beyond its weekly Impact
series, TNA Entertainment president
Dixie Carter said.

Spike, which debuted programming
from TNA in 2005, will remain the exclusive
home for the grappling grop’s programming
— including the wrestling
company’s weekly series Impact Wrestling
— as part of the deal, terms of which were
not disclosed.

TNA’s Impact Wrestling has delivered
strong viewership ratings for Spike over
the past seven years. The series, which features
such iconic and signature wrestlers
as Hulk Hogan, Ric Flair, Jeff Hardy, Kurt
Angle, Sting, James Storm and Rob Van
Dam, is averaging 1.7 million viewers thus
far in 2012, ranking it among the maletargeted
most watched series.

Carter told Multichannel
the Spike extension
would further help
build the 10-year-old
TNA through additional
branding opportunities,
she would not reveal
specifics. Carter
didn’t rule out the
possibility of another
TNA-based show on
Spike or additional TNA-branded projects.

“We look forward to working with Spike
to help us build and extend the TNA brand,”
Carter said.

The deal comes on the heels of TNA’s
announcement that it will distribute a
June pay-per-view event marking the
company’s 10th anniversary. The event,
Slammiversary 2012, will air June 10
and will originate from the Dallas/
Ft. Worth Metroplex area, the company

The TNA extension also comes on
the heels of a ring sports-related deal
with mixed martial arts outfit Bellator
Fighting Championship to develop
an unscripted series. Spike will
team with Amazing Race reality series
producer Bertram van Munster
to develop a series set to premiere in
2013 that will showcase fighters from
the Bellator mixed martial arts franchise,
said network officials.