Jim Ross signs three-year contract with AEW as Senior Advisor

Originally published at https://www.postwrestling.com/2019/04/03/jim-ross-signs-three-year-contract-with-aew-as-senior-advisor/

All Elite Wrestling has announced the signing of Hall of Fame announcer Jim Ross to a lucrative three-year contract with the upstart promotion.

The news was revealed on this week’s Road to Double or Nothing series with Ross joining Excalibur, Alex Marvez, Alicia Atout, and Justin Roberts as members of the AEW’s on-air staff. Ross is coming in as a Senior Advisor and will make his debut at Double or Nothing on May 25th in Las Vegas, Nevada.

In the press release, AEW called it “the most lucrative deal in pro wrestling commentary history.”

Ross’s two-year contract with WWE ended on March 29th, completing an on-and-off relationship with the industry leader that dates to 1993. His latest return occurred in April 2017 where he signed with the company and called the main event of WrestleMania in Orlando between The Undertaker and Roman Reigns.

His role within the company was diminished with assignments few and far between. In 2017, he called the Mae Young Classic and a special from the U.K. In 2018, he was part of the 25th Anniversary of Raw broadcast and his final appearance was on the panel for the kickoff portion of the Greatest Royal Rumble card in Saudi Arabia last April.

When Ross returned to the WWE he was also serving as the voice of New Japan Pro Wrestling on AXS TV, a role he was able to maintain until the end of 2018. When his deal was up with AXS, the WWE would not allow Ross to continue and he finished with AXS TV last November.

Ross received his start in 1972 promoting a spot show for Leroy McGuirk, who he later worked for. He began his commentary career in 1984 for Mid-South under his mentor Bill Watts and was one of the key figures involved in the sale of the UWF to Jim Crockett Promotions in 1987. Ross worked at WCW until 1993 and then went to the World Wrestling Federation for the first time. He was fired several times only to return and eventually become one of its top executives.

Ross served as the voice of the company from late 1997 through 2009 while also becoming the head of talent relations and helping to assemble a roster that took the company into its second boom period in 1998.

Ross was elected to the Wrestling Observer Newsletter Hall of Fame in 1999 and the WWE’s Hall of Fame in 2007.

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Alex Marvez was atrocious in that little clip of him and Cody. Worse than Percy when he first started.

Really happy they signed Justin Roberts though. He was really funny in this episode too.

I wanna know how JR is supposed to tell a story on commentary when the wrestlers don’t tell a story in he ring and just do moves?

Probably going to do a 180 on that like the neckbeards who have been saying Jim Ross isn’t good anymore ever since he did one show in Japan over Don Callis and Kevin Kelly.

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Ross has really gone downhill and wasnt great in New Japan or his recent WWE stuff, but I think a motivated Ross could be a difference maker.

Commentary in the WWE is just horrible, so I think anyone without Vince shrieking in their ear will sound like a better product.

I’d like to see them use Ross occasionally in big moments and matches - not every one on the card. He’s a great talent evaluator too so I think he could be really valuable in that aspect.

Marvez sounded terrible in that video though


Wait…Jim Ross without Vince shrieking in his ear in New Japan “wasn’t good” but he could be in AEW because…motivation.

So he wasn’t motivated calling the hottest matches of the last two years?

Not particularly interested in Jim’s calling wrestling regularly, week to week.

Maybe they could sort of utilize him like the UFC does with Rogan and he only calls some PPVs or big shows/matches.

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JR hasn’t been good for years. I think he’s a great advisor but I don’t want to see him call matches.

On the flip side if he has access to performers and their input in stories they want to tell in ring he could be good. This has really helped the NJPW commentary team getting to speak with performers on things to highlight whereas JR never had that during his AXS days.

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Well yeah, NJPW he was calling the matches in a studio for the most part and it was basically a freelance gig.

AEW he should be right there in the building and have some input in storylines and talent. So yes - motivated. It’s not complicated.

Ross hasn’t done anything on the main roster since Reigns/Taker, and he was the best part of that abortion of a match so he still has something there as long he’s not overused.

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nothing against Jim ross as he’s a big name and bring a lot of credibility to AEW, but is he the best choice to be the lead play by play guy for a product that want to be hip and feel young and fresh?

I feel like at least part of this kind of move has to be because of pitching a network on the idea of a weekly show. Jim’s a well known name and all.

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Because it was a freelance gig?

That’s silly…Just because he wasn’t screaming old JR-isms doesn’t mean he wasn’t motivated.

Not a fan of this.

JR sucks now. He was horrible on NJPW and not a single person will actually tune in to hear this hillbilly talk. He draws no money or no fans to the product.

How can AEW spend so frivolously with basically two shows announced so far?

Real edgy there pal.

Where does it state that he’s the lead play-by-play guy?

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So you’re telling me that watching taped matches in a studio on the other side of the planet from all the wrestlers will be the same as being there live and having a say in creative and other business aspects… ok thanks.

Not watching the match beforehand makes it live.

He was instructed to play it like a contest.

Just because he isn’t going full Mauro doesn’t mean he’s coasting.

He must’ve been phoning in all those Raws before it went live permanently :roll_eyes:

Where does it say hes gonna be doing full time play-by-play?

For now they confirm he will be part of the broadcast team so it might not be a permanent thing but he will be there for the first few events

I also wonder what effect the passing of his wife had in his ability to work. Something like that is going to affect you for a few years afterwards. So, I’m personally hoping that J.R. is in a better spot, emotionally, now

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So he’s not, as you earlier posted, the confirmed lead play-by-play guy. Thanks for reading.