WWE upset with Jim Ross over Ric Flair symposium incident?
The WWE announced on Wednesday that legendary announcer Jim Ross would be retiring to work on personal ventures. While Ross has his own endeavors to pursue, such as promoting his barbecue sauce, it sounds like the WWE pushed him out more than he retired.
Ross debuted with WWE in 1993 to call WrestleMania IX. He served as an announcer through 2011, when he was fired as part of a storyline involving John Laurinatis. He has appeared here and there since then, including last year when he filled in for Jerry Lawler, who had a heart attack last September. But Ross’ inability to control wrestling legend Ric Flair during the 2K Sports symposium last month may have helped to push him out.
According to Wrestling Inc, Flair embarrassed the company so much during the 30 Years of WrestleMania symposium filmed the same weekend as SummerSlam in August, there was talk about letting Ross go for his failure to properly moderate the situation. Ross was the host/moderator for the event that featured WWE superstars and legends Daniel Bryan, Dolph Ziggler, Rey Mysterio, Steve Austin, Paul Heyman, Mick Foley and Flair as panelists.
Flair, who was obviously drunk, took over the event and completed railroaded the entire thing. Ross was also accused of being drunk because he was slurring his words, but he said that was due to his Bell’s Palsy condition.
When I'm tired my Bell's palsy has always made he slur @ times giving some who don't know me the wrong impression. Weakened facial muscles.
— Jim Ross (@JRsBBQ) August 18, 2013
Ross, who was inducted into the WWE Hall of Fame in 2007, began complaining about Flair stealing his thunder. You can see that at the 43:00 mark in the video, which is when the Nature Boy was talking about his match with Shawn Michaels.
Flair went extra dark around the 45:00 mark when he talked about his late son Reid dying. Flair shared a story about slipping his WWE ring on Reid’s finger upon burying him because he wanted to share how thoughtful it was that WWE gave him a replacement ring.
But Flair completely went unhinged during the panel, talking about drinking beer on an upcoming podcast. Flair was so bad that Ross acknowledged how disruptive and drunk the former wrestler was on numerous occasions.
“I’d like to thank Grey Goose for sponsoring this part of the broadcast,” Ross said after Flair went crazy.
Ross even talked about trying to “get back on track” because Flair was being so organic and “real as it gets.”
Around the 58:00 mark in the video, Flair said he wanted to wrestle John Cena. He talked about how Cena didn’t used to drink, but he got Cena to change that. Flair even dropped some profanity at that point.
When Ross tried to step in and curb Flair, Flair just talked right over him and continued. The whole thing turned into a disaster. Flair could be heard totally slurring his words an hour into the panel, and he just completely cut loose around the 1:04:00 mark saying, “Wait til I get to the bar tonight. I haven’t started yet.”
“This is real. This is reality television at its best. I’ve lost complete control of my job. I’m sure I’ll never be asked back, and this has probably destroyed what career I have left,” Ross said at one point.
Maybe Ross’ words actually foreshadowing the future, because he was let go on Wednesday. He reportedly said recently that he was not ever planning to retire from the company. Things don’t seem to add up to a simple retirement.
Tip via Arsen D.