Summerslam 2013 was not good for Jim Ross. He hosted an event that coincided with the Pay-Per-View to promote WWE 2K14, dubbed the “30 Years of Wrestlemania” panel. During the event, allegations of intoxication were thrown toward Ross and WWE Hall of Famer Ric Flair. Although Ross says during the event that several superstars on the panel were not sober, he denied the allegations vehemently, claiming that any slurring was due to a well-documented medical condition.
“Complete lie. I was not drunk. Ridiculous… Understand what Bell’s Palsy is. Fatigue makes facial muscles create slurring.”
The fallout from the event was not good for Ross. He was subsequently fired and has maintained a very distant position in relation to WWE. J.R. is currently in the process of writing a tell-all biography. He plans to finally break his silence through that medium, but his book is still in the early stages. Fans will have to be patient and wait until they read his perspective on that infamous panel. To watch that event in its entirety, click on this link from Twitch.
Since parting ways with WWE, Ross has launched a successful podcast that airs weekly through PodcastOne. The Ross Report is a must listen for any wrestling fan and features the legendary announcer’s perspective on pro-wrestling current events. The podcast also boasts and impressive rotation of interviews of some of the biggest names in wrestling history. In recent weeks alone, J.R. has had conversations with Sting, Kurt Angle, and AJ Styles.
A fan of Ross’ podcast tweeted an interview request via Twitter on August 31st. That request was for the other man in question on that fateful panel, Ric Flair. Jim Ross’ response revealed something interesting about his current relationship with WWE…
Does WWE ban current employees from appearing on The Ross Report? It seems like that’s what he’s saying. It’s also interesting to point out that WWE allows its talent to interview on other PodcastOne shows, including Chris Jericho’s and Steve Austin’s.
Regardless if WWE has banned talent from appearing on the show, and regardless if Ross and Flair were in fact inebriated at the 2013 panel, it is quite a shame for the relationship between one of the greatest wrestling commentators in history and the company he’s most associated with to be in such a cold state.
The bright side to all of this is that WWE and talent have overcome greater hurdles in the past. From The Ultimate Warrior to Bret Hart, hatchets get buried and bygones do eventually become bygones. One day, Ross will almost certainly be back with WWE. We fans can only hope that resolution can come sooner than later.
Do you think WWE and Jim Ross can ever find themselves in good graces again? Comment below with your thoughts or shoot me a message on Twitter @MitchNickelson