Jim Ross didn’t retire. Vince McMahon got rid of him.
Anybody who knows anything knows why.
Ross’ alleged mishandling of that goofy video-game panel discussion that featured Ric Flair was just an excuse. Ross wasn’t drunk, and who gives a frig about a stupid video-game panel discussion? The manufacturers didn’t. THEY LOVED IT. What was said didn’t matter, because none of it was over-the-top controversial. Nobody besides the IWC heard it, and nothing said was new to the IWC.
Ross (and Flair) weren’t given any parameters regarding content by WWE ownership before that panel discussion. All bitching was done after the fact. Ross and Flair merely did what they thought would entertain – and it did.
To be mad at Ross, you’ve got to manufacture an excuse. His professionalism is beyond reproach, as is his knowledge of and love for the business.
Vince, Chyna Jr and the son Vince wishes he’d had pushed J.R. out the door for one reason: ROSS KNOWS MORE ABOUT WRESTLING THAN THEY DO.
People like that make Vince and Co. nervous.
Not that Ross flaunted that. But whenever WWE got it wrong, and whenever an angle went awry or underachieved, the McMahons knew that Ross knew. The McMahons knew Ross could have gotten it right. No one’s thought process has ever bridged the gap between this wrestling and that wrestling like Ross. Ross never said, “I told you so.” In fact, Ross never even told them so.
But Ross could have. Knowing that drove the McMahons crazy.
Ross found a way to don the thickest skin possible to endure the slings and arrows of the McMahons' shameless bullying and baiting. That drove the McMahons even crazier. Having to pay Ross, but not getting their money’s worth – certainly not in the way they wanted – drove the McMahons nuttier still.
Ross led the McMahons a merry chase – and just kept contributing.
Finally, they could take no more. All the crap the McMahons used to try and humiliate Ross backfired. It made Ross noble. Ross outsmarted them without even having to think. He did it merely by being Jim Ross.
I won’t discuss Ross’ career. Everyone else will.
But only one man can say he’s the greatest play-by-play announcer in wrestling history. It sure ain’t Vincent Kennedy f’ing McMahon.
Ross should not have been off WWE television for EVEN ONE SECOND. J.R.’s looks are a problem? A) Announcers are on camera for a couple minutes per show, tops and B) Ross sure ended up with a hotter wife than Vince. Yo, VKM…ever hear of the Americans With Disabilities Act?
Vince, in screwing Ross, screwed his own show, thus screwing himself. No competition leads to serving agendas leads to dumb-ass decisions.
I wish J.R. well. If he wants me to help write his book, I’m right there. If he takes over a wrestling company and sees a role for me, I’m right there. There are only two people I’d ever come back to work in wrestling for: J.R. or Paul Heyman.
But I don’t want to see J.R. take over TNA. Working for Dixie Carter would be a different kind of torture. But it would still be torture.
Follow Mark on Twitter: @MarkMaddenX