Ross opens today’s show by discussing the AEW rally that was held on Thursday. Ross thought all parties involved told the message that they were hoping to tell, that another global wrestling brand is being built in front of our eyes. He thought the presentation was entertaining, and he thought the end featuring Chris Jericho was tremendously booked.
Ross points out that Jericho was the biggest star to appear during that entire presentation, and that’s not a knock on Cody or The Young Bucks. He adds that Jericho is a great “get” for AEW, but he doubts that Jericho will be appearing on a weekly television show because he’s a very busy guy.
Ross points out that with the rise of AEW we may see other talents begin to get curious and start making the jump. Kenny Omega is a big free agent name right now, and it’ll be interesting to see where he ends up. Ross thinks Omega will end up with AEW with his buddies, because he’ll have creative’s ear there and he’ll be comfortable.
Ross thanks the Khan family for their investment in the wrestling business; the business he’s been a part of his entire life. He points out that it’s a great time to be a fan of wrestling, and it’ll be a lot of fun to watch AEW develop over the next year.
Moving into his thoughts on Monday Night RAW, Ross says the video package dedicated to his late friend, Mean Gene Okerlund, was phenomenal. He wishes Okerlund was alive to see it, and he thought Hogan was great in his role.
Ross was not a fan of the showdown between Brock Lesnar and Braun Strowman. Strowman is apparently not cleared for contact by WWE doctors and that restricted this segment. Lesnar circling the ring like a shark didn’t do Strowman any favours in Ross’ opinion.
A listener writes into the show and asks Ross how long it took him to accept the transparency of the wrestling business, and the rise of dirt sheets. Ross says he’s still not really a fan of “pulling the curtain back” and he doesn’t see how it does any good for the business, but that’s the way it is and he simply has to deal with it.
Another listener writes into the show and asks Ross how close he ever came to seeing Vince McMahon with facial hair. Ross says he can only recall McMahon missing one day of shaving, and by the second day he’d be clean shaven again.
Ross welcomes Ryan Satin of Pro Wrestling Sheet to the show.
Satin says he’s sorry about the passing of Ross’ wife, Jan, who showed him a great time at a WrestleMania after party several years ago. Ross thanks Satin, and adds that Jan was a big fan of TMZ and knew Satin from his time working on that show.
Ross asks Satin what he thought about AEW’s rally on Thursday. Satin thought AEW accomplished exactly what they set out to do. They came out guns blazing in an attempt to prove to everyone that they’re not some indie promotion; they’re a legitimate start-up that has a chance to challenge WWE at some point.
Ross thinks AEW will be a more reality-based, athletically-centred product, resembling NJPW in style more than WWE. He thinks it’ll gives fans something that’s closer to a legitimate sporting contest than we’ve seen from WWE. Satin agrees with all that, but he hopes AEW still provides some entertaining segments in between all the athletic wrestling; entertaining segments that don’t insult our intelligence like some of the things we’ve seen from WWE over the last few years.
Ross points out that television is still king in the wrestling business. Some have said that a television deal is imminent for AEW, but Ross thinks a deal is already done. He doesn’t think we would have seen a huge spectacle like we saw on Thursday without a solid television deal in place.
Ross thinks AEW faces a challenge in the sense that they have three talents working as Executive Vice Presidents with a hand in the booking. Satin agrees but thinks that Cody and The Young Bucks realize the situation that they’re in. After all three of them went over at their show, ALL IN, they’ll be careful with how they book themselves moving forward.
Ross thinks the idea that AEW can compete with WWE is premature. He points out that AEW can be massively profitable and have a lot of success without ever approaching or even thinking about WWE.
That sums up this week’s episode of The Jim Ross Report. You can listen to the show yourself anytime here, and I’ll catch ya next week for another recap!