It has come to my attention recently that Ring Of Honor Wrestling’s deal with HDNet is ending. As someone with Time Warner Cable, I will admit that this channel was not available to me and so I did not watch their shows but I did check out internet videos from time to time. I may not know every wrestler on their roster but there is one thing I know, they have a great in ring product that many fans do not have access to on a regular basis. This made me wonder, why shouldn’t Showtime or HBO consider offering professional wrestling programming and if they do, wouldn’t ROH be the best fit?
Showtime and HBO feature boxing and MMA on their channels as well as a wide variety of shows and movies and I think this would be a great addition. I would not have an issue if TNA or WWE made such a jump but with ROH providing more in ring product than those two and less soap opera drama, ROH could appeal more to the same demographics who enjoy MMA and boxing. ROH has a very passionate fan base and offer great in ring talent/matches that would attract even the most casual of fans if they had access to the product. And no need to go out and sign big names just to make a splash, do what ROH does best and offer some of the best and hungriest wrestlers in the world and feature great matches.
Just think about how this could benefit ROH, the premium network that made the deal with them and wrestling fans for just a minute. ROH would get a channel that every cable or satellite service carries and thus get more exposure to their product. This would also benefit Showtime/HBO because I believe passionate wrestling fans would look into adding their channel to their cable/satellite packages and with the proper advertising/push, those numbers could grow in time. Showtime is a CBS company and both sides may benefit from cross promotion as well to build interest from those who are not already watching but might enjoy action packed shows. Fans would benefit because for less than the cost of a monthly pay per view, you not only get the ROH shows but you have access to the programming they already offer which in most cases includes multiple channels as well as movies, series and sports.
This would not hurt any credibility on either side and I feel as though it could be a great way to change the way wrestling is viewed by many. If ROH wanted to run pay per views, they now have a partner to do so but my hope is they would appreciate that fans paid for the premium channel and keep it to a limited amount per year if they get such a deal (this also makes the pay per views have more of a special feel when they do). I do not work for either party so I am not sure what it would take to make such a deal or what changes would have to be made to the product/company but I definitely see nothing but a bright side to this as a fan.