Last year, WWE fired several talents and members of staff and that included the commentary team. Adnan Virk was previously released from his role of Monday Night RAW commentator and then Tom Phillips was released as well. It seems Phillips has a lot of freedom in Impact Wrestling.
WWE Hall Of Famer Mick Foley was certainly shocked at his firing. Tom Phillips’ release was not part of the recent mass cuts. Phillips, now known as Tom Hannifan, joined Impact Wrestling’s commentary team at Hard To Kill.
Hannifan certainly had a great time in his debut appearance in Impact Wrestling. He will now be Impact Wrestling’s new lead commentator. While speaking to Renee Paquette on Oral Sessions, Hannifan talked about how his deal with Impact Wrestling came about.
Tom Hannifan then explained how much freedom he has in Impact Wrestling compared to his time in WWE. Hannifan revealed how he is able to say a lot of things he couldn’t before as well.
“It’s only really developed within the last month. I have a lot of friends (in IMPACT) who kind of connected me with the powers that be, we had some good conversations, and the schedule was very attractive. I just got done doing a 52-week a year schedule for about nine years, so I was like, ‘this is great and really cool.’
Everything that I was told about, what the locker room was like with Scott D’Amore and Josh Mathews, everything has been accurate and awesome. When you know a bunch of people, showing up and seeing Matt Rehwoldt and him being like, ‘what the hell are you doing here?’ It was really cool.
You go from the pressure of being like, for a number of different reasons, the way WWE produces shows, but all of a sudden, now it’s all on you. It’s largely your show. I was given a lot of faith to go out there and do what I did with D’Lo. It was nerve-racking because it was, ‘Oh, this is what I did,’ and WWE has certain ways they like things done and things said and not said.
All of a sudden, I can say certain things that I wasn’t able to say. ‘This is really cool.’ We couldn’t refer to Bullet Club, obviously, for trademark reasons, so we danced around it and said ‘The Club,’ so I was like, ‘oh, I can say Bullet Club on the air. I can say pro wrestling.’ Just little trademark and branding things that WWE likes to do, and that’s fine, but there are so many little changes.”
We will have to wait and see how Tom Hannifan will perform in his role as lead commentator for Impact Wrestling. Odds are, he will have a great time in the company.
h/t to Fightful for the quotes