Recently on The Jim Ross Report, WWE Hall Of Famer Jim Ross weighed in on a number of professional wrestling topics including WWE’s alleged misuse of current WWE SmackDown Live! Women’s Champion Asuka and rumors on new WWE Superstar Lacey Evans getting a title shot at WrestleMania. Additionally, Ross told a story of WWE Chairman Vince McMahon wanting to call up current WWE Universal Champion Brock Lesnar too soon.
According to Ross he is displeased with Asuka’s treatment on SmackDown Live. In Ross’s view if Asuka’s language barrier is keeping her from being all that she can be in WWE, WWE is just as guilty as Asuka for failing to address it.
“I’m a big Asuka fan,” Ross reflected. “I think she is very underutilized, very under-positioned. It’s always going to be the same old BS of, ‘well, she doesn’t speak good English.’ How long has she been here? How long has she been around? And if she can’t speak English, why hasn’t that been addressed long, long before now? You can’t use it as an excuse if you could have corrected it. That’s on management, bad planning, and if she didn’t want to learn English and make herself more marketable, maybe she should be doing something else. But I think Asuka is a huge star. She has great charisma; she is believable; she has an exotic look. I haven’t heard any stories about how she’s a crazy person in the locker room. But if the excuse is, ‘well, she doesn’t communicate well and it’s a North American audience or an English-speaking audience – she’s a disconnect [with the audience],’ who’s fault is that? If she’s not putting out the effort and you’re trying to help her learn English, that’s one thing. But you’re telling me she couldn’t go to Full Sail [University] and get tutoring for English? I don’t get that.”
With respect to the rumors that Evans may receive a SmackDown Women’s title shot at WrestleMania, Ross cautioned that the standout NXT performer needs more time to develop.
“Apparently, Lacey Evans is in line for the old proverbial push,” Ross said. “You all like to talk about who’s getting their push. I think this. I said this when I met her, Lacey Evans, before the Mae Young Classic #1, she has everything. She has an amazing look. Her background is absolutely unduplicated. She’s a marine drill instructor for real! She’s extremely athletic, but here’s the thing. She needs more time to learn how to wrestle. I’m not saying, ‘she sucks,’ but for her to be at a level of an Asuka, or a Charlotte, or any one on the top, top echelon, which is where WWE apparently sees her, Lacey, then she’s going to need to work on her game.”
In speaking on Ross’s concerns about putting Evans in a main event spot at WrestleMania, Ross recalled heading up WWE’s Talent Relations department and having to convince McMahon to leave Lesnar in developmental at one point. Apparently, McMahon wanted to call Lesnar up to the main roster and ‘Good Ol’ JR’ had to point out that a person as big and strong as ‘The Beast’ can really hurt someone and McMahon relented.
“I remember the old story where Vince said, ‘we want to bring Brock Lesnar to television.’ And I said, ‘he’s not ready.’ ‘He’ll be alright.’ I said, ‘no, he won’t alright because he can’t protect anybody yet. He’s too damn big and strong to not be fundamentally sound and protecting his opponents.’ It doesn’t take much of a miscue from him before you’re in trouble. And Vince realized it and he agreed, so he waited four weeks. Lesnar was on the fast track, but my thoughts are Lacey Evans has everything it takes to be a star. Great media star, she’s intelligent and articulate. Get her back in the ring and drill, drill, drill. Everybody you bring in there to wrestle her should be better than her and I hope it’s being done.”
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Source: The Jim Ross Report
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