​Jim Ross Gives His In-Depth Thoughts On The WWE Royal Rumble Pay-Per-View Event


During the latest edition of his Ross Report podcast, WWE Hall of Famer Jim Ross gave his in-depth thoughts on the WWE Royal Rumble pay-per-view event:

On Kevin Owens vs Dean Ambrose: “I thought that the Rumble had an auspicious start with the Last Man Standing match. I got some thoughts on that. You know – I wrote a blog this week on my website where I said that the only thing in hindsight that I’d look at, as far as that situation, was the obvious things: It’s hard in a PG environment to have a bloodless Last Man Standing match, but, they pulled it off, and those guys (Ambrose and Owens) did a great job. I might have had the US title match go on first and saved the gimmicks and tables and chairs and all that for a little bit deeper in the card, because everybody had to follow that. So I was concerned…I’m saying this – I really enjoyed the match. I have great respect for Ambrose and Owens. I think that they can be a lot more of an asset on the talent roster than they are. They still have not been officially and universally received by the audience, but they’re really good, and they can be big time players if the presentation remains in place. All I’m saying is that in today’s PG world there’s some matches that need to be reevaluated, because we have to be really creative to maintain a PG structure based on the structure and the stipulations of the match.”

On New Day vs Usos: “Here’s the deal – because I know all three of the guys on a personal level from my tenure there at the WWE, I look at it a little different than most people, but I want them to succeed. I think that they are very entertaining – sometimes they are a little obnoxious (not that that’s a bad thing in the entertainment world) – but, I can’t make myself look at them with antagonist angst. I just don’t feel it…I liked the finish. I know it was challenging – It’s just tough when you’re getting cheered and you’re supposed to be heel, and the Usos are getting booed and they ain’t done nothing wrong. I don’t understand that dichotomy. It just got me stumped.”

On Kalisto vs Alberto Del Rio: ”Early in the process (two or three days ago) I thought that Kalisto would win, and I didn’t know – I didn’t have any inside information – but I just looked at it from what I would do if I were doing it that seemed to be the most logical based on the information that I had…I didn’t think that Alberto needed the US title in his group unless they were all going to have something that was viable. I thought that the League of Nations was a nice TV persona for him. I thought that having an underdog, baby face champion was not a bad thing. I thought that having a Hispanic, fan-favorite star was very smart marketing. So, I looked at all of the wins that you get out of Kalisto being there: the fact that he’s beatable, the fact that he’s a little bit unique, and he always has a good match on the house shows, or live shows. So, it just felt like it made sense to me, and I didn’t think losing the US title hurt Alberto Del Rio whatsoever.”

On how WWE talent should handle their gripes with Vince McMahon: ”My only advice was this – I want you to walk in there and converse and not confront. You will not get what you want by confronting that alpha male, and so those who followed my advice generally had a positive interaction. Those who didn’t – got nowhere. It’s a matter of having confidence in your ability to communicate. It is not the end of the world to walk into his office and give him your side of the story and him not buy it or him not go that direction. If it’s well placed, and it’s well presented, he generally likes it. He likes the process that you went through to do it, because I used to tell him all the time, “Guys are scared to death of you …because you are the most powerful man in the world in this business…”

On Charlotte vs Becky Lynch: “I thought that Becky left the match better than she entered, because I cared more about her losing and how she lost, and then getting abused after she was down by Sasha Banks. I really thought that I cared more about Becky Lynch at the end of the process then I did her coming in, and I’m a fan of her work. I think that she’s set up now to work with the two top stars. Becky can work with Charlotte on the road and she can also work with Sasha…Obviously the money that they believe in is Sasha vs Charlotte at Wrestlemania – that’s what I’m thinking. Then everyone is going to start being the booker, “well what about Bayley? What about Paige?…Bottom line is – I thought it was a good story.”

On Roman Reigns and His Booking: ”I thought [having Roman leave the Rumble] was a real clumsy attempt to have him John Wayne his way out of there…Can you prop up Reigns enough between now and [WrestleMania] – be really diligent on how you use him. Don’t have him over-exposed; which I think is an issue right now – he’s over-exposed to some degree, and you have The Rock in Reigns’ corner against Triple H with Mr. McMahon in Triple H’s corner. Would that be a difference in helping Reigns get accepted?…I wish I didn’t know him as well as I did, because I really feel bad. I know how badly he wants to be where he’s going or where he’s trying to be placed. He’s got a good work ethic. He’s a guy who weighed 330lbs playing college football at Georgia Tech., and he’s worked really diligently to get himself in great shape, so I know there’s a commitment there. I know that he’s a good athlete. I think that he’s a good citizen from all that I can tell. I think that he’s a good choice for elevation and promotion and advancement, but I just believe that the way he has been booked has not been his best interest as it has worked out.”

On AJ Styles’s Debut: ”I’ve had guys tweet me about AJ concerned and angry that he didn’t win the Rumble. I thought that he had a really good showing. I thought he got a good entrance, I thought that the announcers took really good care of him; I thought that the talent took care of him. He got some really cool spots in on a variety of guys, so I thought that he had a really good first night at WWE.”

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