The champions in Impact Wrestling history feature some all-time great names that delivered incredible reigns like Kurt Angle, AJ Styles, Gail Kim and Beer Money. However, not every wrestler will make the most of their opportunities to add to the titles’ respective legacies. Certain wrestlers have even hurt the belts with their stints holding gold disappointing the audience.
Disastrous is one of the worst ways to describe anything since it implies the worst level of failure. Wrestlers to reach that level are hitting the worst-case scenario of being a champion. Impact’s history back to the TNA years opens a lot of creative flaws that hurt the talents and the titles. Each of the following wrestlers had the most disastrous Impact Wrestling title reigns ever.
10 Rob Van Dam (Impact World Champion)
TNA put a lot of eggs into the basket of Rob Van Dam when signing him as a major free agent and putting him at the top of the card. Van Dam had a huge moment defeating AJ Styles to become the Impact World Champion and the face of the company moving forward.
Unfortunately, the age of RVD started to show with an uninspired title reign hurting a lot of his value after signing to change the landscape. TNA even had a low moment of hitting Van Dam’s contract dates too early and had him vacate the title after an attack instead of losing it to put someone else over.
9 The Band (Impact Tag Team Champions)
Hulk Hogan’s era in TNA started with him hiring Scott Hall and Sean Waltman to eventually reunite with Kevin Nash. Both guys had disappointing TNA stints in the past and proved they were not reliable enough to work for a major promotion at the time.
Hall and Waltman were out of their peak shape, but TNA still pushed them as The Band. All three members defended the Impact Tag Team Championship when winning the gold. Most matches were embarrassing, and the reign ended via vacating it when Hall and Waltman were released yet again.
8 Velvet Sky (Knockouts Champion)
The Beautiful People were among Impact Wrestling’s top acts, but they never pushed Velvet Sky in a major singles role until she was a babyface. Velvet’s first Knockouts Championship win was meant to be a big deal coming at the company’s biggest annual event Bound for Glory 2011.
However, the story of Velvet’s chase peaked with the win and just exposed her weaknesses as a below average in-ring worker as champ. TNA lost faith right away and had Gail Kim end Velvet’s reign after a month right when she returned from her second WWE stint.
7 Rob Terry (Global Champion)
TNA had various names for a mid-card belt that evolved from the Legends Championship to the Global Championship by the time Rob Terry won it. Many people in TNA management loved Terry for his jacked physique and the relative youth behind him.
Unfortunately, the title reign just made Terry look weak as someone not ready for that level of a push. A talent winning a belt too early can easily lead to their career falling apart. Terry peaked with a disastrous title reign as Global Champion limiting his chances at long-term success.
6 Eric Young & ODB (Knockouts Tag Team Champions)
The comedy idea of babyface couple Eric Young and ODB winning the Knockouts Tag Team Championship had a polarizing reaction. Young and ODB had some funny moments together, but it wasn’t worth sacrificing titles that helped the women’s division.
TNA turned their title reign into comedy segments of Young retaining while avoiding hitting his female opponents. The Knockouts Tag Team Championship were retired when TNA couldn’t book a way for them to lose it, especially after the belts lost a lot of its credibility.
5 Tessa Blanchard (Impact World Champion)
Impact Wrestling took a risk when having the story of a first-time ever occurrence of a woman winning a world title only held by men before her. Tessa Blanchard was firing on all cylinders and seemed poised for a legendary career with such a highlight moment.
However, stories from other wrestlers accusing Blanchard of being a bully and a racist hurt her and Impact Wrestling the day she won it. A combination of Tessa’s reputation falling apart and her not showing up at pandemic tapings saw her vacating the belt after a failed experiment.
4 Robbie E (X-Division Champion)
The X-Division was often protected by TNA with only the best in-ring performers winning the gold. However, TNA went too far away from that when having Robbie E becoming the X-Division Champion for a huge change of pace.
Robbie E rarely had good matches and was all into the character side. Unfortunately, his character was a parody of characters from The Jersey Shore reality show. Even fans that were tired of the overall TNA product usually typically liked the X-Division and had this reign taking that away from him.
3 Josh Mathews (Impact Grand Champion)
Impact Wrestling tried to use the heel character of Josh Mathews to get more and more heat. Some would define it as go away heat since fans were just tired of Mathews being an over the top villain all night on commentary calling the show.
Things got worse when Mathews was gifted the Impact Grand Championship from Matt Sydal. Mathews getting more television time as a non-wrestler champion just turned more viewers away from the product during a stint when Impact couldn’t buy any positive momentum.
2 Team Pacman (Impact Tag Team Champions)
TNA made a huge risk bringing in NFL player Pacman Jones after he was suspended from the league for a season and had many negative stories associated with him. Pacman couldn’t even wrestle or take part in any physical risks as part of his NFL contract, but TNA still tried to make it work.
R-Truth had to do all the wrestling when he and Jones won the Impact Tag Team Championship as Team Pacman. TNA saw the belts being treated with no respect since Pacman just stood on the corner and tagged in when it was time to score the winning pin fall.
1 Jeff Hardy (Impact World Champion)
Hulk Hogan believed that Jeff Hardy turning heel and becoming Impact World Champion would take the company to new heights like when Hogan turned heel in WCW. Jeff couldn’t play an effective heel and led a cheap rip off faction of the New World Order with Immortal.
The second Impact World Championship reign of Hardy only lasted under two weeks yet could be considered the worst reign in company history. Jeff dropped the belt to Sting in the infamous match of him showing up under the influence after he was already losing momentum with the lackluster act.