Yes, that's what's been in the back of my mind. THOR would have a lock on the market for years to come if merger went through...but if the merger failed HRTW with its superior device could find other sources of help and eventually give THOR serious competition.
Even if the merger completes, there will be a significant dilution in earnings for the short term.
The problem is 'why did THOR allow HeartWare to develop such a lead in miniaturized LVADs?' Especially with THOR's lead and financial muscle. THOR allowed the prior wrong person to lead the VAD division.
I suspect that THOR has a Manhattan type project in miniaturization just in case the FTC rejects the merger. However, HTWR may own a significant patent portfolio that may inhibit THOR's effort.