Written Podcast Recap: The Jim Ross Report – Kenny Omega Talks G1 Special At Cow Palace In SF, plus who J.R. thinks should call the Mae Young Classic, Booger Red, Extreme Rules and more

The Jim Ross Report

Release Date: July 4th, 2018

Recap by: Joe Aguinaldo


0:00 – Intro

Welcome back to another episode of Slobberknocker audio with Good Ole J.R. who is back from the UK and getting ready to go to San Francisco for the G1 Event at the Cow Palace. Coming up on the podcast is part 2 of his conversation with Kenny Omega, talking about a number of topics including his thoughts on the WWE. Kenny will defend the IWGP title on Saturday, July 7th against Cody. J.R. and Josh Barnett will be calling the match.

2:16 – What’s on J.R.’s Mind

It’s been a busy week and J.R. is glad to be back home and wishes everyone a Happy 4th of July. He had a great experience in the UK for his shows, selling out 4 out of 5 shows. He really enjoyed the Q&A’s and meet and greets and thanks everyone who was involved with the shows.

This is a big weekend for wrestling on AXS TV. They will be broadcasting the full Okada/Omega match from New Dominion on Friday night, July 6th. On Saturday, July 7th, AXS TV will be airing the G1 Special live from the Cow Palace in San Francisco with Kenny Omega defending his title against Cody.

J.R. and his team had a good meeting in the UK with an importer/exporter who is not Art Vandelay (Seinfeld represent!!). They’re trying to work out a deal to get J.R.’s BBQ sauces shipped at a reasonable price. He also met with Paul O’Brien to discuss the sequel for Slobberknocker. They are still in the early planning stages and are hoping to meet in the summer to figure out their strategy.

J.R. has heard some rumors about NXT moving to FS1. If you’re FS1, it’s a great move, as NXT is a unique product and sub-brand of WWE. It has its own personality and presentation and FS1 would be well served if they made that deal. It would also make it easier for more people to watch NXT. J.R. also read the possibility may exist to do a couple of weekly NXT shows on FS1, which would help build the brand.

J.R. and his team have already booked a venue called Opry City Stage near Time Square in NYC to run some events during Wrestlemania weekend.

Impact’s Slammiversary is coming up on July 23rd. J.R. is pulling for Impact, as it gives wrestlers another place to work which J.R. fully supports.

The MLW group have some tapings coming up in Orlando (July 12th) and Queen’s (July 19th) for their Battle Riot card. Check out www.mlw.com for more details.

J.R. is happy to see iTV is getting back into wrestling with their World Of Sport show. He has good friends at iTV and has a good personal and professional relationship with the network. He thinks they belong in the wrestling business and hopes they do well.

J.R. is impressed with the work the WWE is doing with the Special Olympics. It’s important that all of us take some ownership and pay it forward. We can all do more to help people or show some support whether it’s financial or timewise.

Somebody asked if J.R. will be involved in the Mae Young Classic, but he doesn’t think he will be as he would have been contacted by now. He also doesn’t feel he did his best work on that project and while the effort was there, the results weren’t as good as he wanted. Additionally, the WWE have a lot of younger announcing talent that need work. He thinks Tom Phillips would be a good choice and is someone who needs more reps.

J.R. will be at the London Film and Comic Con at the Olympia Exhibition Center on July 27th, 28th, 29th. Other guests include Gail Kim, Jeff Jarrett, Carly Perez, Hurricane Helms, Mark Henry, So Cal Val, Tatanka, Fred Ottman and Billy Gunn.

Extreme Rules is on July 15th in Pittsburgh. The card looks good and the booking is interesting. The match that stands out to J.R. as potentially the best match is the 30-minute Iron Man match between Seth Rollins and Dolph Ziggler. A.J. vs. Rusev is an interesting matchup because both are popular with the fans. J.R. is curious to see how the Lashley vs. Reigns match turns out and is not so sure their styles will mesh to create a great match. He doesn’t feel it between those two yet. On paper, it should be a hard hitting match but something tells him it may not be artistically pleasing. Asuka and Carmella is intriguing while Nia Jax will wrestle Alexa Bliss. The B-Team vs. Bray Wyatt and Matt Hardy is interesting. J.R. talks about how well the WWE women’s division has grown and has given the fans something new and interesting and was the right thing for the WWE to do.

28:59 – Slobberknocker Of The Week

This week’s candidates:
Jerry Collins, a person J.R. met in Cong, Ireland during his recent UK tour who had some great stories and entertained J.R. and his crew.
Jay Lethal, who became a two time ROH Heavyweight Champion this past weekend.
Hebron James, who signed with the LA Lakers for $154 million dollar contract.
John Tavares, who signed with the Toronto Maple Leafs for a $77 million dollar contract.

This week’s award recipient is Matt Cappotelli, who recently passed from brain cancer. He was one of the WWE’s best prospects along with John Hennigan at the time and J.R. had great hopes for him. He reminded J.R. of a little bit of Brian Pillman and was a good kid who wanted to be a wrestling star. J.R. sends his condolences to Matt’s family and friends. He will be missed and was a warrior. His battle against cancer was nothing short of awe inspiring.

37:25 – Pet Coon Goofy Award

This week’s candidates:
Places in the UK that don’t have ice for their drinks.
Diego Maradona who was at the Argentina game and looked like he was in an ‘altered’ state. He was giving fans the finger, acting dramatically, dancing with event staff then falling asleep during the match and had to be treated by paramedics. There was also a white powder everywhere in his suite.

The Pet Coon Goofy Award goes to the dog handler who was handling the police dog that bit Shinsuke Nakamura causing him to miss TV this week. He was unable to compete in Japan and may miss a few more weeks.

43:46 – This Week In Wrestling

July 6th, 1985, 33 years ago – The Great American Bash drew 27,000 fans to American Legion Memorial Stadium in Charlotte, North Carolina. Dusty Rhodes beat Tully Blanchard for the TV Title.

July 7th, 1996, 22 years ago – WCW Bash At The Beach – The birth of the NWO.

July 6th, 1997, 21 years ago – In Your House, The Canadian Stampede in Calgary. The main event was the Hart Foundation defeating Stone Cold, Road Warriors, Goldust and Ken Shamrock. When the match was over, there was a huge celebration which was one of the most emotional and wonderful moments that J.R. can remember.

July 6th, 1998, 20 years ago – 41,000 came to the Atlanta Georgia Dome to watch Goldberg win the WCW title after defeating ‘Hollywood’ Hulk Hogan.

July 5th, 2015, 3 years ago – Kazuchika Okada defeated A.J. Styles to capture the IWGP Heavyweight title at the Dominion event.

Late NY Yankees owner George Steinbrenner would have been 88, Barry Windham (58), Adam Cole (29, bay bay), Lars Sullivan (30), Vincent James McMahon would have been 104, Shelton Benjamin (43), Kevin Nash (59),

55:26 – Mailbag

Send questions or comments to thejimrossreport@gmail.com.

Q: Who does J.R. see winning this year’s G1 and does he have a match he’d like to see for the IWGP title at Wrestle Kingdom?

A: Okada has a shot at winning or at the very least be in the conversation. As for Wrestle Kingdom, he hopes Kenny Omega still has the title or Cody because he wants to see where New Japan will do. New Japan has done a great job of putting the title on someone and letting them evolve and grow.

Q: Did J.R. come up with the term Booger Red nickname for Taker and what does it mean?

A: Booger Red is a reference to a great Texas linebacker named Tommy Nobis who played with the Atlanta Hawks. He had a 20-inch neck and red hair and was known as a fierce hitter. His nickname was Booger Red. Booger in this case does not mean something that comes from your nose but rather a goblin or scary entity. J.R. thought this might work for the Undertaker as a tribute to Taker’s Texas heritage but unfortunately, it “sh*t the bed.”

Q: Would J.R. like to see Dean Ambrose come back as a heel and feud with Strowman?

A: Dean Ambrose is going to come back to a hero’s welcome but doesn’t know how much momentum Dean would have going up against Strowman. J.R. says he should get established as a babyface then let it evolve from there. Bottom line, Dean coming back as a villain doesn’t make any sense.

1:03:28 – Kenny Omega, Part 2

Q: What kind of goals does Kenny Omega the IWGP champion have? J.R. suggests one of the goals is making it to January in the Tokyo Dome as the champion.

A: Kenny never thought he would main event the Tokyo Dome but now he’s done it twice. He is trying to incorporate as many side products as possible to help build the brand. If NJPW is to become more household, it won’t necessarily be a result of how good the matches are (and they are very good), but more special types of appearances. For example, Kenny is trying to do more commercials and the E3 event. Things like the E3 event makes more fans, creates more awareness and shows that different brands (i.e. WWE and NJPW) can come together to make the best possible product. Kenny is also producing his show in Daytona Beach and they also have the G1 tournament coming up after the Cow Palace event.

With regards to the G1, Kenny says there’s a different level of expectation for the champion during the tournament. Everyone looks at the round robin matches against the champ as a reason to challenge the champ. Every match needs to be taken seriously and has a hidden meaning beyond the points for the tournament. J.R. agrees and says it’s great and simple booking. If you beat the champ during the tournament, you now have a reason to challenge the champ later on. Kenny is looking forward to orchestrating that story through his block of the tournament.

Q: Does Gedo do most of the booking alone?

A: Jedo tosses in ideas and another person named Kikuchi who is behind the scenes. Gedo is not a ‘tyrant’. He comes up with a backbone idea then asks the people involved if they are cool with the creative and it either goes down as he suggests or he allows talents to put their spin on it surrounding the original idea. Gedo is open to everyone’s creative input which is a reason Kenny thinks that New Japan has a completely different feel than other wrestling products.

J.R says what Gedo is doing is something that smart bookers have done for generations and compares this to Bill Watts in Mid-South working with talents to develop their storylines and McMahon working with Austin.

J.R compliments Kenny saying he has great old school, fundamental beliefs but is delivering those beliefs in new packaging. J.R. loves Kenny’s passion, drive and creativity and likes that Kenny isn’t scared to do things he does well more than once.

Q: Do people kid Kenny about Meltzer’s star systems? What is Kenny’s theory on the star rating and has it been a blessing or a curse?

A: Originally, for the first Okada match it was a blessing. Social media helped that match because it allowed word-of-mouth traverse a lot of ground in a short amount of time as well as getting new eyes on the products. When hype started dying down, Dave Meltzer came along and gave the match 6/5 stars which renewed interest in the match. Kenny says Dave has a lot of influence over wrestling fans. If Dave says a match is good, many people will watch. On the other hand, people who do not like Dave will watch a match Dave rates highly just to ask why it was rated so highly. Kenny adds that Dave has more influence in wrestling than even some of the wrestlers do. Kenny is a friend of Dave’s and doesn’t take it personally if he doesn’t get a good match rating. He understands the rating is just an opinion and Dave isn’t afraid to stand by his ratings and doesn’t care that he may be hurting some of the feelings of some of the performers. Kenny says Dave is knowledgeable and knows a lot about the world and history of pro wrestling so his opinion is valuable but isn’t the be all and end all. Dave doesn’t generally rate comedy matches high where Kenny loves them so when it comes to a rating for a comedy match, he won’t listen to Dave because of their differing views.

Coming back to the question of blessing or curse, when Kenny got the 7-star rating, he got a lot of congratulations but it also led to a bunch of hateful messages as well. Also, whenever NJPW has a big show, there’s usually a WWE the next week. A lot of the WWE fans will tag Omega on twitter and say the WWE matches were better than his match which is fine with him but don’t tag him because it’s clogging up his timeline. J.R. agrees and makes the comparison of fans not liking J.R. and Josh compared to Kevin Kelly and Don Callis.

Q: J.R. talks about Omega being the champ and having to go on last. J.R. brings up a story about Austin getting mad at J.R. for booking him in a tag match instead of the original idea of having him on in the last match (which thankfully they changed). J.R. asks if Omega has that same mentality and how does Kenny process having to go on last every night.

A: Kenny says he appreciates the responsibility of being the guy they count on and doesn’t take it lightly. However, he does not want to get into a pattern of having a formula where every match looks and feels the same because even if you can draw emotion from a crowd, eventually your matches will appear lifeless and soulless. Fans are smarter these days and will pick up on that quickly. Kenny treats his matches as episodic TV and thinks of this as a superhero show. He uses Batman as an example and in one episode, you may face the Riddler which will be different than facing the Penguin next week, which will be different than facing the Joker. The problem Kenny sees in a lot of wrestlers (and using the Batman comparison), many wrestlers want every week to be the Joker. They want the match to be the be-all end all where they will empty the tank and kill themselves but do things that don’t necessarily make sense towards the match. Kenny hopes that he will have a wide variety of opponents which will lead to different and unique stories for each of those opponents.

J.R. says talents have to stop being creatively lazy and emotionally invest in the business. J.R. voiced over the Takahashi/Ishimori Super Juniors final match which was a whole show. Kenny said that was an athletic display. J.R. also says Huromu is a unique cat that has IT.

Q: Is there are short list of guys that Kenny wants to have a single match with outside of Okada.

A: Kenny says the match a lot of people are looking forward to is a match with Ibushi which has been announced for the G1. Kenny is chomping at the bit to show what Ibushi is capable of and while people know some of what Ibushi is capable of, he hasn’t shown it in his newest form. Ibushi is ready to step into the league of top guys that can main event any New Japan show. Naito is another person Kenny wants to wrestle as well as Zack Saber Jr who he’s never worked with. Kenny says Hiromu could be someone who graduates from Jr Heavyweight and move onto other things due to the fact his charisma is too huge to be contained in one division. New Japan needs to capitalize on him. Other guys Kenny would like to work with are Will Ospreay and Rey Mysterio.

J.R. says Okada vs Omega has its own brand and compares it to the Flair/Steamboat rivalry. They are both willing to help the other guy get over and if everyone does that, the business will be better for it.

Q: J.R. doesn’t want to ask when is Kenny going to WWE but does ask what his thoughts about the WWE as it relates to Kenny Omega down the road.

A: Kenny keeps up to date and tries to watch at least the highlights of every show (RAW, Smackdown Live and 205 Live). He’s happy for everyone that is doing well there. He brings up his ‘feud’ with the New Day and how special they are. When he thinks about the possibility of mixing it up with guys from the WWE it gets him excited. Kenny would like to work with Seth Rollins and J.R. brings up Daniel Bryan which is another match people would be excited about. Every promotion has so many good guys that Kenny would have a good time going anywhere because of the depth of talent and WWE has a great collection of talent. Kenny feels it would be a missed opportunity if he couldn’t work with some of the performers in WWE and would like to be able to do that while he can still move.

J.R. is looking forward to seeing Omega defend his title against Cody at the Cow Palace this weekend. J.R. jokes and says the over/under on stars for that match is 4. Kenny says with Cody, he wants to tell a deep, intricate story that relies less on shock factor. In the current star rating, if you’re not jumping off a 30 foot platform onto a table, you’re losing out on stars. Kenny would rather drag people in for an emotional ride. J.R. thanks Kenny for being on the show, plugs his twitter (@KennyOmegaManX) and Kenny signs off.

1:35:41 – Show Wrap

J.R. thanks Kenny for being on the show and plugs the July 7th event at the Cow Palace. J.R. goes through some of his latest 5 star reviews and plugs some of the Westwood One podcasts. Former WWE Women’s champion Beth Copeland (aka Beth Phoenix) will be on next week’s program and that’s a wrap.

Rating – 8/10

Good podcast from J.R. Kenny Omega was a great guest as he’s an intelligent, thoughtful wrestler and part 2 of his interview with J.R. did not disappoint. I love hearing his takes on the business and really do hope he gets to the WWE soon (but only if it’s the right deal). There are so many great match ups for him in the WWE.

0:00 – Intro
2:16 – What’s On J.R.’s Mind
28:59 – Slobberknocker Of The Week
37:25 – Pet Coon Goofy Award
43:46 – This Week In Wrestling
55:26 – Mailbag
1:03:28 – Kenny Omega, Part 2
1:35:41 – Show Wrap

About Joe:

Joe lives in Toronto, Canada with his wife and two boys. He’s been a fan for over 40 years and one of his life goals is to be a guest host on one of Wade Keller’s post show podcasts. He doesn’t consider himself any sort of expert. He just likes wrestling. Check him out on twitter and instagram @ja113.

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