Originally published at WWE and Adnan Virk mutually agree to part ways
Coming out of WrestleMania 37, it was confirmed that MLB Network and podcast host Adnan Virk would be taking on the role as lead commentator of Monday Night Raw. Today, WWE announced that they and Virk mutually agreed to part ways. WWE thanked Adnan for his work in their article on WWE.com.
Thanks to @WWE for a wonderful opportunity. The weekly travel along with my other jobs was a grind for me and my family. Am grateful to everyone with the company especially @WWEGraves and @ByronSaxton for being such fantastic teammates. https://t.co/lrP0fCAMXz
— Adnan Virk (@adnansvirk) May 25, 2021
Virk was joined at the commentary desk by Bryon Saxton and Corey Graves. Filling in for Graves on SmackDown is Pat McAfee who is paired with Michael Cole.
The negotiations between Virk and WWE began in December of 2020. He told Ryen Russillo the following on his podcast about his venture into WWE:
I auditioned early February, got the job. Obviously had to get consent from MLB. It was probably wrapped up around late March and then I flew down under the cover of darkness in my fedora and trench coat to WrestleMania Saturday and then I think some reports came out Saturday so, at that point some people were texting me going, ‘Wait, is this true?’ And I had been told, ‘Listen, you don’t respond to anybody. Until Monday at 10 AM hits, nothing. I don’t care who it is.’
Fellow former Raw commentator Samoa Joe was released from WWE last month.
Could they get someone who actually has “wrestling commentary experience” on their resume ? That was ridiculous.
I like Adnan Virk but not as the lead commentary on Monday nights. Hope he settles back in to a nice role in the sports world.
Yeah, he’s great at what he does, but I don’t think anyone is surprised at how rough of a start this was for Virk. Felt like he was starting to pick up stuff, but he needed far more time to play catch up at a job that never waits for anyone. He’ll be fine though.
All that said, Tom Phillips is really good at the job and as I said when Virk was hired, is really the ideal commentator WWE is always looking for. I know why they tried this and I somewhat understand the idea of always trying new looks, but it’s Raw, not a teaching ground like NXT. And if Raw is struggling, it’s hard to also be struggling in an area that can help make up for other flaws. They have a good, young group in Phillips/Graves/Saxton that work really well together and theoretically should be the #1 team down the line. It’ll be good for them to be solidified in that role now.
Those will be my memories of this guy. This fucking company needs to stop dicking around Tom Phillips and keep him there. He does a solid job.
I liked Adnan on Sportsnet but he wasn’t cut out for this
Completely agree. Adnan is great as a sportscaster, but it was obvious by all the “wow’s” that he had no idea how to call the action.
Is he the worst WWE announcer since Mike Adamle?
I actually think he was a lot worse than Adamle
I don’t think he was worse than Adamle, but I think he bit off more than he could chew.
Either Phillips gets his job back, or better yet, they rehire Samoa Joe!
I think he was in an impossible situation. I give him credit for what he was able to do with zero experience, but he just didnt know wrestling. Based on that, I dont get why they are upset with him, I can’t see how he could have been better.
Can they please just take Saxton off, replace Virk with Philips and just go with Phillips and Graves. Or just go with Saxton and Graves. Im so sick of the 3 man booth.
I would love to have Joe back, but they want a play by play guy. Graves and Pat check the boxes of colour commentator which is what Joe was.
I was starting to come around on him a bit. The way he could introduce his colleagues and and welcome viewers back from a break by setting up a match really did feel like a lot more of a real sports broadcast than most commentators can achieve. It’s just that small detail of actually knowing the wrestlers, their moves, and the ongoing storylines, and incorporating them into his broadcast where he fell short. If he had been given some time to hone his craft on 205 Live or something I think he could have been really good.
100% agree, I think fans have been too hard on him.
I’ll never forget…
“Clear the tracks, we’re gonna need a bigger boat”
“What kind of boat do you know that operates on tracks Virk?”
He literally commentated like he had never watched pro wrestling before, almost unapologetically.
That sounds like much more of an indictment of the management who put him in such a position than Virk himself. Perhaps if WWE didn’t shit-can every single person whom they don’t have immediate plans for the next week, they could have eased him in a little more.
Exactly…that’s why I’m a bit surprised. How can they be upset thatthe guy who knew nothing about wrestling knew nothing about wrestling. Maybe it was his decision.