Jim Ross Looks Back On His Time As A Commentator For NJPW

AEW announcer and Senior Advisor “Good Ole’ J.R.” Jim Ross took to an episode of his “Grilling Jr” podcast to talk about a number of topics including his time as a commentator for NJPW and WWE giving him the clearance to do it.

Ross said, “The WWE ease deal? Yep. You know, they gave me the clearance to do all these projects that you outlined and your grocery list a few minutes ago. But you know, I was under contract to them. And you know, there’s always that caveat called WrestleMania that you want to be a part of. I saw online the other day where I called 17 Wrestlemania, so I didn’t have a clue. I had called that many. That’s a lot of calls. A lot of shows. But WWE when Kevin Dunn….had great communication with me. They knew my contract status and had access to TV and Cuban’s company, but They wanted me to be full-time and not extend that arrangement. So I was not going to be able to extend in any event so, but I never left there, meaning LA and LA Live and access TV and all that stuff. I never left them, you know, upset or unhappy. It just worked. It worked out great. I was one of the most working for Access TV, Adam Swift, and all these guys were one of the greatest pleasures of my professional life, really. I wouldn’t trade that experience for anything and yes, it was daunting. This is challenging. You’re in little rooms I’ve outlined ad nauseam, but that’s where we were. We just made it work. And I had a great time. Those guys treated me like family. You know, Mark Cuban volunteered his private plane and actually flew a neurologist to Norman. It was pretty magnanimous. It’s pretty impressive. Unfortunately, she didn’t last long enough to see what the second doctor’s opinion was going to be, and it just didn’t work out, but the thought that Mark Cuban tried to help me out in that moment was something I’ll never forget. And I’ll always admire him and appreciate Mark Cuban for that.”

His favorite NJPW match that he called:

“It will probably be something involving Shinsuke Nakamura. I thought he was the most mesmerizing talent I’d seen in years, maybe a generation, certainly. And within the decade. I mean, he was so over. And he was so unique. His body. He’s so flexible. And he worked stiff. And all that, you know, I’ve never thought I haven’t seen that version in WWE yet. And I think that may be a missed opportunity somewhere when people look back on it. You can get a lot more mileage out of Schinsky than maybe he’s getting. That’s just me being, you know, sideline Booker. But she was Shinsuke and Okada. You could tell Okada was gifted, and he has something special. Both those guys had amazing timing and crowd psychology. In-ring psychology, they had it, they displayed it, and they told great stories. They were unselfish with each other.”

You can check out the complete podcast in the video below.