Monday, June 26, 2017

Can Shaq make an impact on Impact?

Shaq & Hulk Hogan in TNA in 2012
Courtesy: Impact Wrestling

Kevin Hunsperger
@kevinhunsperger & @my123cents on Twitter
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There's some buzz this week that NBA Legend Shaquille O'Neal will be making an appearance at the upcoming Slammiversary pay-per-view for Impact Wrestling. At this point, it's just a rumor and is based on a recent comment by Jeff Jarrett. He promised "the most powerful, influential resident of Orlando, Florida" will be associated with the event. Some wrestling sites are betting on Shaq.

Shaq & Big Show standoff
Courtesy: WWE
It does make sense. Shaq is a huge celebrity and does indeed live in Orlando. He's got a history with being involved in professional wrestling, dating back to the WCW days. Shaq was in the Andre the Giant Memorial Battle Royal at WrestleMania 32 and was rumored to be facing The Big Show at this year's WrestleMania in Orlando, but the deal fell through. Plus he appeared on an Impact episode, promising Hulk Hogan he had his back against Aces & Eights.

John Cena & Shaq
Courtesy: WWE
Now to answer the question of this post, can Shaq make an impact on Impact? Of course, he can. I'm not going to hate on Impact or Jarrett for wanting to bring in a big name celebrity to spice up the show. WWE has been doing this for decades with everyone from Mr. T to Snooki. And as Impact continues to reboot and rebuild, this could be the shot in the arm the doctor ordered.

I have no idea if Shaq will wrestle. From a marketing and branding standpoint, I'd certainly start getting the word out now what his involvement is going to be. Yes, there's always fun in the surprise, but if you're looking for buy rates and mainstream coverage, in my 1-2-3 cents, Impact should be letting the world know they've got one of the most iconic basketball players of all-time on their show. And since the show is six days away, the time to start promoting the big name appearance has come.


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