Jim Ross Blogs: Matt Hardy's Release, Jeff Hardy, Taz, RAW
On Brock Lesnar vs. Cain Velasquez: Brock Lesnar is reportedly at 265 as we speak so there will be no cutting weight for the UFC Heavyweight Champion for next Saturday's eagerly anticipated title defense against undefeated Cain Velásquez. I see this as good for Lesnar fans because already being at the required fighting weight will prevent Brock from having to tweak his diet or training regime prior to the fight in Anaheim. Even though Lesnar will fight lighter than he originally fought in UFC, the former WWE Champion, NCAA All American and National Champion is still beastly strong which could be an key factor in his next encounter in the Octagon. Point is that Lesnar has lost no strength with his lesser weight plus Brock's cardio, one would assume, will be enhanced by not having to carry so much mass in what is expected to be an extremely competitive fight. If Velásquez's camp thinks that Lesnar is going to 'gas' after a round or two then they need to re-evaluate their strategy because that isn't happening. Brock only took two weeks off after defeating then undefeated Shane Carwin and went right back to serious training mode for the Velásquez fight. Lesnar won't be coming off a near one year layoff for this fight either. I could see this PPV doing between 750,00 and one million buys unless the economy is weaker than many perceive.
On Taz: Emailer...biggest ever ECW star? Very arguable...very subjective...to me it was Taz in the ring but the MVP outside the ring was obviously Paul Heyman who captained a 'pirate ship' of eclectic personalties. Taz would have been the biggest star from ECW to hit it big in WWE if injuries had not derailed him in a WWE career that started with Taz tapping Kurt Angle in Madison Square Garden. I always thought Taz could have been a major player in the ring for WWE.
On Matt Hardy: Here's wishing Matt Hardy well as he navigates the next phase of his career. Matt will likely have some time to reflect on his career and intensely prepare for the next phase. Matt had a great run in WWE where he gained notoriety and earned a fine living. Matt wanted to move on from WWE after being there for over a decade which is pretty amazing once one thinks about it. I remeber hiring the Hardy's back in the day and even remember that they designed and physically made their own wrestling attire. How many wrestlers can you picture working away at a sewing machine?
On Jeff Hardy: Emailer....I have no crystal ball, I wish that I did as it would make my football life easier, so I don't know how Jeff Hardy will do in his new persona. Does anyone conclusively know? Probably not but time will certainly tell. New roles require different skills and nuances which some talents master and some don't. It all comes back to presentation and execution over an extended length of time.
On Raw In Calgary: Raw from Calgary should be fun Monday night. I would assume Bret Hart will be on hand if for nothing else to say hello to everyone. I called hundreds of events in my career but none was likely more intense or organically exciting than the WWE PPV we produced in Calgary during the Stampede that culminated with the 10 man tag featuring the Hart Foundation. For pure passion and for a live audience to make such an emotional investment in an event, this one will stand the test of time.
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