Jim Ross On WWE/Denver Incident, RAW Announcing, Tag-Teams

Matt Boone

Jim RossThe following is an excerpt from the latest online blog of WWE announcer Jim Ross:

Interesting week. The "Debacle in Denver" has had many people buzzing including some aloof, talking heads on ESPN SportsCenter who seem to get orgasmic when they get the opportunity to utilize witty banter to knock the genre of wrestling and its fan base. For the record I am NOT referring to my friend Jonathan Coachman.

I feel badly for the fans in Colorado who lost multiple WWE events because of the scheduling snafu at the Pepsi Center. Most know what a "Lewinsky" refers to so I wonder if arena scheduling issues might be referred to as "Kroenke’s" in the future?

Denver Nuggets and Pepsi Center owner Phil Kroenke likely won’t be treated too kindly this Monday night on Raw by Mr. McMahon. Kroenke’s image may make Mr. McMahon’s treatment of Ted Turner back in the WWE/WCW Monday night war feel like Ted was a blood relative of the McMahon’s.

With Jerry Lawler wrestling in Monday’s main event, I wonder if ‘Ol J.R. will get to join Michael "Oh, My" Cole at the announce desk on Raw? I enjoyed sitting in with Cole in Louisville even though some folks are wondering why I was so "conveniently" available Monday night.

As Cole would say, the answer is simple and "vintage."

Seriously it is a good question and we should have explained it. When Smackdown doesn’t have Monday live events we are going to record the SD WWE Superstars bout that airs on Thursday night on WGN America. This will be prior to Raw unless it is a west coast Raw and then one would assume our Superstars bout will be recorded after Raw. For those that need to know, ECW’s Superstar bout will still be recorded on Tuesdays.

Nonetheless I plan on being in Los Angeles both Monday and Tuesday nights just to warn you. I’ll be in the "bullpen" if needed.

And another excerpt:

It was a unique week as far as broadcasting was concerned for me. Sitting back at ringside for Raw in the color commentator’s chair was different but fun. Raw is such a different animal than is SD. SD is more in ring, action oriented while Raw is more verbally enhanced. I think my style fits SD better but I would be lying if I said I did not enjoy working on a live, live show without a net such as RAW.

It felt that Todd Grisham and I had one of our best Friday Night Smackdown’s that we have been able to put together for the show that airs this Friday night from Cincy. The opportunity to help make the SD brand more viable within the WWE corporate structure and, more importantly, the opportunity to help enhance the development of young stars on SD makes working on this show particularly fun.

As I said I think my skills (no jokes please) are better suited for Friday nights considering the way the WWE TV shows are produced and no one is doing old school, play by play any longer any way. The philosophy of announcing has changed significantly over the past few years to where the role of "play by play" man is essentially history. Play by play has been replaced with "story telling." Plus, announcers are implored to not scream or yell at the viewer and keep themselves under more control. I have heard some announcers on TV who yell for the hell of it which is akin to crying wolf. I know that I have been guilty of getting a little carried away on more occasions than I like to recall.

If one listens to my "play by play" work from the mid 70’s through the early 2000’s it stayed somewhat consistent, depending on the quality of the product we had to work with, but it’s an entirely different presentation today.

I am a fan of tag team wrestling even though some of my remarks on this website have been misunderstood. I never said that there wasn’t "room" for tag teams in wrestling. I have been fortunate enough to have broadcast more great tag team bouts than any broadcaster working today and I readily acknowledge that there are some excellent tag teams competing in the biz. My point has merely been that due to the lack of overall depth in the business that there aren’t enough great tag teams to keep tag team wrestling positioned where it should be. When is the last time on a major PPV have two, full time teams headlined? I rest my case.

Check out his full blog at JrsBarBQ.com.


  • In case you missed it, embedded below is part two of the exclusive WrestleZone.com shoot interview with former TNA star Johnny Devine. Make sure to visit WrestleZone.com throughout the week for further installments of this multi-part WrestleZone-exclusive shoot interview!

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