One of the biggest keys for any company in the wrestling industry is building homegrown Superstars, and TNA has done a great job taking Ethan Carter III and giving him the stage to blossom into a top-tier heel.
As the kayfabe nephew of TNA president Dixie Carter, ECIII has been portrayed as one of the top bad guys in the company. The storyline featuring his aunt going through a table attracted mainstream attention, and ECIII was one of the highlights of the angle every week.
Whether it’s a comedy segment or a serious promo, Carter has shown his talent on Impact Wrestling.
The biggest news of the week was TNA officially announcing that its flagship program would be moving to Wednesday nights. Impact Wrestling has been a part of Thursday night for a long time, but the return of NFL football and the lack of competition on Wednesdays have helped the television network pull the trigger on the change.
Spike TV and TNA have also announced that they have extended a working deal through the end of 2014, according to ImpactWrestling.com.
When asked about Impact Wrestling’s switch in an interview with Ring Rust Radio, Carter talked about the lack of competition on Wednesdays and the positives of the move, courtesy of News of Delaware County's Joe Arcidiacono:
The one thing I’ve noticed with TNA is that it has its loyal fan base and we just need to improve on that and it seems like we have these past couple of months. As far as no direct competition, I know when it comes to NBA and NFL, they kind of bite into us a little bit on Thursday nights, so it’s going to be great to be away from that.
At the end of the day, we just need to keep delivering dynamite television to keep attracting viewers, and I think Wednesday nights is a great time to do it because I seriously see nothing on Wednesday nights when I watch TV, and I watch a lot of TV. So it’s actually a personal benefit to me because I like to watch the NFL and NBA too so now I won’t miss them at work, which is nice.
While the transition from Thursday to Wednesday was the biggest news of the week for the company, Carter is showcasing his vast skill for TNA regardless of which night the show airs on television.
It’s hard to believe that ECIII was once signed to WWE, but that’s the truth. Instead of the sport’s top company finding the potential in the 31-year-old star, he wallowed in the company’s developmental system and was eventually released.
Carter signed with TNA and was immediately placed in a top storyline as Dixie’s nephew. With the ability to draw heat from the crowd, the willingness to play the ultimate heel on the mic and the skill to perform in the ring, Impact Wrestling has developed a gem with ECIII.
When asked about the move from WWE to TNA, Carter spoke about his time in NXT and his feelings toward finding success when he made the jump to Impact Wrestling, via Arcidiacono:
I’m an extremely motivated person, regardless of negative things that happened to me, but I wouldn’t lie to you to say, ‘Look, see, told you, this is me.’ But I can’t worry about things that happened in the past or the negative things because I try to look at what’s going to be positive and on what my focus is, which is making TNA the best I possibly can make it, and whatever that takes to do, I will do. I work for my personal satisfaction and then for my bosses as well and as long as I get the thumbs up and get paid by somebody, I feel like I’m doing my job and I’m cool with that.
Being driven helps, if you look at any athlete or entertainer, they’re all going to come to times where, if it’s handed to you and it’s easy, then it’s not worth having, and it hasn’t been easy. Nothing’s really been handed to me and I’ve stayed in the game long enough to get an opportunity that I’ve been hopefully knocking it out of the park every chance I get. The only focus is to keep doing it and keep living because at the end of the day, this is the best job in the world if you’re doing it right.
Carter has found more success in his short time with TNA than he ever did with WWE. While officials behind the scenes at NXT are usually good at spotting talent and building it, the company dropped the ball on ECIII and let the competition develop him into a star.
Fans complain about TNA’s inability to develop talent, but ECIII is the perfect example of giving an unproven wrestler the chance to succeed and watching the risk pay off. The same risk has failed in the past, but Carter is the ideal example of the success the company had building a new star.
Instead of being known as a former WWE Superstar who signed with TNA, Carter has ensured that he will become a mainstream name despite his former employer's lack of faith. The fans love the way Carter has handled himself under pressure, and the result is a character who deserves to be booked in the main event scene.
After showing his skill and versatility over the last year, ECIII is ready to become a top star for TNA.
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