Ross opens today’s show by speaking about his experience voicing over the Wrestle Kingdom 12 show for AXS TV. He didn’t watch any footage of the show before doing his voiceover work because he didn’t want to be pre-conditioned one way or another before calling the action himself. Overall, he thought the show was very good.
He was was fine with Okada/Naito going on last instead of the Jericho/Omega bout. He points out that there’s prestige in that Heavyweight Title, and Title matches should go on last. He also thinks that Okada and Naito need to be commended for their work in the main event because after a very exciting show they still managed to follow everything that came before them.
He thought the Jericho/Omega match had one of the better builds he’s seen in a long time, and they had big expectations. In Ross’ opinion, they delivered in a “big, big way”. He points out that when Jericho wrestles as a heel he doesn’t try to be cool, he tries to be hated.
Ross is aware that Jericho appears to be starting a new feud with Naito right now, but he doubts that Jericho will be working a full-time schedule in Japan moving forward. He assumes that NJPW needed a big match for their upcoming event in Osaka and Jericho/Naito would fill that role nicely. He expects Jericho to do one-off appearances from here on out.
Ross thought Cody and Ibushi had a great match as well. He wasn’t sure how much he would like the interference of Brandi Rhodes, but he thought she played her part very well. Much like Jericho, Cody has worked very hard at getting fans to dislike him and it’s paying dividends.
Ross credits WWE for coming up with the Mixed Match Challenge. He points out that inter-gender matches are not a new concept and they’ve been around for decades. He likes that WWE has taken this old concept and found a way to bring it into the future by airing it on Facebook Watch.
He thinks the Women’s Royal Rumble match is stealing some of the thunder from the Men’s match this year. He loves the idea of having a Women’s Rumble match because he thinks WWE has the talent, and this is a great opportunity for the Women to showcase that.
Ross welcomes John Pollock to the show.
Pollock informs that he has worked for the Fight Network in Canada since 2005, working primarily on a show called “Live Audio Wrestling”. Unfortunately, due to budget cuts that show was recently cancelled. Pollock felt that he had built quite a base of fans over the years and has decided to pursue his own venture alongside his longtime partner, Wai Ting.
His new website is called PostWrestling.com. This is something he’s always had on his mind, and he wouldn’t be able to do it if he was still working at the Fight Network. He points out that the last few months have been the most exciting part of his career, and he’s very excited about how quick this project has come together as well as the great feedback he’s received.
Pollock informs that Anthem Media is the parent company of The Fight Network. This made his job as a wrestling reporter there very interesting after Anthem acquired Impact, but he made it clear right away that this acquisition wouldn’t affect the way he covered their product. His bosses urged him to be as critical about the Impact product as he saw fit, and that’s exactly what he did.
He points out that Impact has their work cut out for them in 2018, but he has faith in Don Callis and Scott D’Amore. He hopes that Anthem and the fans have patience, and hopefully these guys can turn it around. He assumes that Callis and D’Amore have been given complete creative control, because it wouldn’t make sense for Ed Nordholm and Anthem to handcuff these guys right after hiring them.
Pollock mentions that he would rather see Ronda Rousey sitting ringside than competing in a match at the Royal Rumble. He feels having her sit ringside would create a lot of speculation, and he’d prefer that Rousey had her debut match at WrestleMania anyways.
Ross welcomes Ron Harris to the show.
Harris informs that he has started a new wrestling promotion entitled, “Aro Lucha”. This is something that he and his brother have been thinking about for a long time and he’s thrilled that they were finally able to pull the trigger. He thought there was a market in the United States for a traditional Lucha promotion featuring Lucha performers and utilizing Spanish as the primary language.
He hopes that his new promotion will be able to give a bunch of young luchadors a place to work, and he plans to incorporate a touring schedule into their plans. He assumes that once the promotion gets rolling he’ll have more and more established names calling him, looking for opportunities to work.
Harris’ promotion has hired Vince Russo as a creative consultant, and Harris absolutely expected a backlash when he hired Russo to work with him. He points out that whether you like Russo or not, you have to respect the numbers that Russo put up in all the places he’s previously worked.
He points out that Russo thinks outside the box and comes up with fresh, creative ideas. They then work with Konnan, who lets them know whether those ideas fit within the Lucha culture or not. Ultimately, he and his brother, Don makes the final creative decisions.
That sums up today’s episode of The Ross Report. You can listen to the show yourself anytime here, and I’ll catch ya next week for another recap!