Scott D’Amore: IMPACT’s Knockouts Tag Titles Are ‘Here To Stay’, We Have The Talent And Depth To Thrive Long-Term
Scott D’Amore says IMPACT Wrestling took the proper amount of time to build their women’s tag team division so they have the depth and the ability to prosper for many years to come.
D’Amore spoke with WrestleZone for our annual “Best For The Business” series and talked about IMPACT Wrestling‘s revival of the Knockouts Tag Team Championship. First introduced in 2009, the titles were active until June 20, 2013, when ODB and Eric Young were stripped of the titles, which ultimately resulted in the titles being quietly deactivated. Fans have called for the titles to be brought back to television, and their wish was finally granted as Madison Rayne announced the return of the division at Bound for Glory 2020.
After nearly eight years, IMPACT has Knockouts Tag Team Champions in the form of Tasha Steelz and Kiera Hogan, who won the belts at Hard To Kill this month. D’Amore spoke about what the catalyst was for bringing the titles back, agreeing that there’s a lot more talent today to ensure these titles are here to stay.
“You have to rewind a little bit. In 2017, when I first started coming around IMPACT again—and at that point I was just a consultant—but at one point, I was at a taping and there were four women. You know, there were four females there and I mean you can’t build a roster, and I think the average at the time was about six that we usually had. You can’t really have a lot of depth of storytelling both with the Knockouts Championship and then tag team titles, if you’re so limited in competitors. And it was important to us to build out not just numbers,” D’Amore explained, “but build out the right athletes to be part of this division. And I think we have great depth in our Knockouts Division. I think we have great diversity in the different characters and the different styles of the wrestlers, the Knockouts there. And I would love to have had the Knockouts Tag Team Championships, and many of us would have, much sooner but it was really a matter where it was something that was always talked about but then our fear was, we don’t wanna bring the Knockouts Tag Team Titles back and then great, you crown champions, you do a feud or two and then you’re like, ‘Oh what are we gonna do with these?’ And have them wither away.”
“Right now, we feel like with the depth of the—not just the numbers, but of talented performers and athletes in our Knockouts Division—that these tag team titles this time are here to stay. And now that we have that depth, and as we continue to look to see people come in and out, like you’ve seen Jazz, who is a legend and getting to watch the excitement in some of our Knockouts and male wrestlers as well, getting an opportunity to interact with someone like Jazz, who I’m sure was an instrumental part of these people as they were, their formative years of watching and growing up with wrestling, and you’ve seen Renee Michelle and other athletes and Killer Kelly, who maybe aren’t part of the full-time Knockouts roster yet, at this point,” D’Amore said, “but you’ve seen that the depth of talent is there, both in the full-time roster and in the people that we’ve been able to bring in. The fans have wanted it and I know sometimes it’s frustrating for the fans to want something now and then have to wait for it but one thing that myself and Don Callis and Ed Nordholm have been very consistent in, from when we took the reigns at the beginning of 2018, to now, is that we were not going to be about quick fixes.”
“It would have been great to say, ‘Hey, the Knockouts Tag Titles are coming back’ but we weren’t ready for it, so we took the time, and like we talked about, step by step, you build it. You build a building brick by brick, and now we have the foundation that’s so important when building anything, and we’ve put in the work and the labor, and we now have the depth and the ability that this division and the knockouts tag team division, can thrive. Not just now, but long-term.”