October 17, 2005
SLAM! Speaks: Who replaces Ross?
By SLAM! Wrestling Staff
We're only a few hours away from WWE revealing who will be replacing Jim Ross as the new play-by-play announcer on Raw.
Yes fans, many of us never thought we'd see those words in a sentence, yet here we are, just moments away from finding out who the new blood will be on WWE's flagship show...unless they choose to go with Coach, which is what many of us are assuming will happen.
Here's what the SLAM! staff had to say:
While Jim Ross' departure from the Raw broadcast team is sad, it opens the doors to a lot of new opportunities. I wouldn't mind having Joey Styles fill the spot. He is popular with the people, knows how to call the moves and is an established commentator. Unfortunately, it appears as though WWE will decline those thoughts and stick with a two man commentary team of The Coach and Jerry "The King" Lawler. Give them time and they should be just as good.
I would like to think that WWE would be creative and bring in a top play-by-play man to replace probably the best broadcaster in the business, JR. I'm glad Mike Goldberg fell through as I see him as a better colour man, and doesn't have the excitement or passion level of JR. Who would be the best replacement? Well the best and what is probably going to happen are two very different things.
The best choice: Without a doubt Mr. Joey Styles. If Styles and WWE could
ever put their differences behind them, this would definitely be the best fit. Styles is passionate, exciting, and teaming him with either Coach or King would be a fantastic combination (preferrably King). With Styles, I don't think RAW would miss a beat on the commentating side.
The most likely scenerio: I sadly predict that they are going to give the Coach the reigns on RAW. Even though Coach has proven time and time again to be an average-at-best commentator, with nothing to bring to the table I see this as the choice. Why else was he brought in as the third man with Ross and
Lawler? As a colour man, Coach has a bit more potential being a heel, but the play-by-play guy? No way. RAW will suffer greatly on the excitement level at the commentating side of things. I hope I'm wrong though.
Canadians will remember a few years ago when CBC tried to remove Ron Maclean from Hockey Night in Canada; the backlash from the public forced them to reverse their decision in a matter of days. In light of the surprising amount of backlash from the internet fans on WWE's decision to get rid of JR, they did the same thing, and brought him back in a few weeks.
If not, then I think there is only one other person I would like to see
take over the announce booth, and that's Joey Styles. He has the
skills, he has a tremendous fan following of his own (who might not
watch the show now, but be tempted to do so if he was calling the
matches), and, most importantly, he's not Johnathan Coachman.
I'm probably the only one saying it, but thank god they dumped JR. I respect what he's done, I respect what he was, but like so many other talents around WWE (Flair, Hogan, 'Taker), Ross has stayed long past his prime. He mixes up names, wrestling move names and is becoming as big a shill as Schiavone.
So who replaces him? Well, I'd love to see Joey Styles in the role, and given his tease at a career announcing UFC, you have to figure Joey might be swerving the 'net. My thought, however, would be towards someone who is in the company now. Someone who is on TV regularly. Someone who has been an announcer before.
Yes, my pick is Eric Bischoff. Think about it; the McMahons are in control of Raw again, so why do they need a GM? Bischoff, who has openly said how much he hates Ross on TV, would be the perfect heat-grabber.
-- compiled by Jon Waldman
Upset about Jim Ross being fired? Check out the competition. Buy TNA Lockdown in the SLAM! store.