During the most recent edition of The Jim Ross Report, J. R. talked about the return of Rey Mysterio for the 1000th episode of SmackDown Live, and also brought up the recent controversy surrounding WWE Crown Jewel. Jim mentioned that WWE was not being hypocritical in taking the talent to Saudi Arabia while promoting women's evolution, and that the WWE could actually do some good, and initiate a dialogue that could see women competing in Saudi Arabia in the near future.
"The Saudi Arabia show… the political aspects of Saudi Arabia show are something I can't do anything about", Ross noted. "I don't know what you'd do. I'm not going to get into the political discussions. Look, if the talent can go there and foster any change of this like by the WWE, then I'm for that. Making life better for everybody. I don't know what I could do personally other than say this that I don't agree with how women are treated even in America. You don't have to go to Saudi Arabia to figure out that there's problems abroad. Women cannot be considered second class citizens, period.
"So no, I don't think that it's hypocritical that WWE is going there, and they are promoting women's movement, not at all. They're addressing another agenda, and that agenda will include women at some point in time."
Matt Hardy also joined Jim during the podcast, and J. R. asked Matt about his immediate future. Hardy did mention that he was at crossroads in his career, but noted that he wouldn't retire from the industry.
"Retirement, that's a big buzz word. People have asked me since I'm at crossroads where I'm not 100% sure about what my in-ring future is, but as far as my television role on WWE that will 100% be something in the future. I'm not sure in what capacity exactly. But like, retiring is something I will never do. I'm so passionate about this. This is a love of mine, being involved in the wrestling industry. If you can't do it in the capacity you did years and years ago, just be involved in some shape or form. I'll always be involved in some way. Retirement is not something that will be in my future."
Matt was then asked about the possibility of him working as a producer or a road agent, while mentoring the next generation of Superstars. Hardy said that the topic had already been discussed, and that he would be interested in taking up the role in the future.
"It definitely interests me. It is something that has been talked about. It is something I've even experimented with a little bit in the past, and that could possibly be a part of my future. And when I return to the company at WWE, I'm very confident I will have an on-TV role as well, but I will also have a behind the scenes role; a producer role is something which I definitely think I could do one day. I don't know if that day could be in 4 weeks from now, or 4 years, or 10 years from now. But I'm sure I'll do that at some juncture."
If you use any of the quotes in this article, please credit The Jim Ross Report with an H/T to Wrestling Inc. for the transcription.