The A.V. Club has a new interview with WWE Hall of Famer Jim Ross, who was promoting his “Ringside” show in Chicago at Zanies Rosemont on May 21st. Below are some highlights:
His new deal with WWE:
“I think I’m going to do 30-40 dates in my first 12 months of my deal. Those dates are to be determined. There’s nothing they can assign me that I haven’t done before. How many wrestling matches you think I’ve called in my lifetime—100,000? If they want me to do U.K. or NXT or Main Event, I don’t care. It’s all good to me. My days of being the lead guy, the No. 1 voice—all that is way yesterday. Guys who’ve had those issues like I have had in my career, they have self-esteem and confidence issues. I have both those. Totally happy to admit it, but I ain’t got them no more. I’m 65 years old. I feel great, I just lost my wife, I’m trying to get back on my feet here, and I’ve said this and I truly mean it: I’m happy to get my jersey back. I’m happy to re-sign with my old team. Whatever role I need to play, I’m fine with.”
If he interacted with The Undertaker at WrestleMania 33:
“Yes, I did. And I had interactions with him before. He used an RV as his dressing area. I went in his RV when I arrived hours before we were going on. So we had a very good personal conversation. We’ve been joined at the hip for a long, long time, even back to the WCW days. I helped get him into WCW from World Class Championship Wrestling. I thought at the time, you don’t see too many 6-foot-9, 300-pound guys who were athletic. Young Mark Calaway was an athletic beast. So we had a nice conversation. [And after the match], a big hug afterward. I cried, he didn’t want to cry, though he might have had a tear. It was very emotional for him afterward, and I didn’t want to monopolize his time. It sure as hell wasn’t about me, it was about him. What he helped facilitate for me was the greatest honor I have received in wrestling. I’ve been in three Halls Of Fame, and they pale in comparison to having a legendary guy wanting to bring me back—whether I was under contract or not—to be part of the broadcast team, so I can add to his soundtrack of that match. It was a really emotional day.”
His upcoming one-man show in Chicago on May 21st:
“It’s got an indescribable feel, quite frankly. The building’s got a personality, and it reflects the personalities of those sitting in the seats. For me, I’ve never performed or worked in a more memorable arena. And selfishly for me, I was sitting in that arena when I found out I was going into the WWE Hall Of Fame in 2007. The building’s got a personality that’s living and breathing, and the atmosphere is really amazing. It makes you glad to come to work that day.”
JR also discussed when talks with WWE started, if he will still be involved with the ITV show, his return at WrestleMania 33, Shinsuke Nakamura and more. You can read the full interview by clicking here.