During the 83 Weeks Podcast, Eric Bischoff answered questions asked by listeners via Twitter. Of the questions answered, he was asked one about Michael Cole being disliked by fans and how he's not being able to talk and say what's on his mind. Rather, he says what Vince McMahon in his ear tells him to say.
Bischoff said the play-by-play in WWE is lacking because of the large amount of production they're being given by someone benign in their ear. He also says Michael Cole isn't to blame.
"I don't think you can judge play-by-play or color commentary in WWE and assign that judgement to the individual who's performing," Bischoff said. "In this case Michael Cole, he is heavily, heavily produced. He's doing what he's asked to do and he's obviously doing it very well because he's been in that position a long time. He's delivering what the guy who signs his checks wants him to deliver.
"I applaud him for doing that - that's your job. When you take that job, you know what the rules are. You know what the process is, and the parameters are, and you sign up for it, and you do the best you can, and Cole does that."
Bischoff continued to talk about the approach WWE takes with their play-by-play announcers and how he disagrees with it. He also mentioned how AEW has done a better job than WWE with their announce team, and how they've provided better commentary with the style of it.
"I think play-by-play is one of the missing [elements] in WWE, not so much in AEW. I feel strongly about J.R. [Jim Ross] and Tony [Schiavone] as a team. The style of play-by-play is much different."
He continued to mention how play-by-play commentary should be done different than how it's being done in WWE.
"Play-by-play is a different art form," Bischoff said. "I love hearing traditional play-by-play. Describe to me what's going on and in a way that, if I was blind and didn't have eyesight but I loved professional wrestling, paint that picture for me in my mind. It enhances people who don't have sight issues when you describe it that way. You're creating a sense of being there and seeing it live. Even though you're watching it on T.V., you feel like you're in the venue.
"If you can draw me into that arena by describing what's going on as opposed to lines somebody else is feeding me, which doesn't really have anything to do with the viewing experience at home. A play-by-play person's ability to transport a viewer from their home into that arena is an art form in itself."
Lastly, Bischoff talked about how great Michael Cole really is at the job he is doing and how much skill he has outside of what he's being told. Bischoff also said he could never do what Cole does, and how he has the ability to go above and beyond what we see.
"I think the way WWE produces their play-by-play approach doesn't provide that opportunity, and I think that's seriously lacking," he said. "I think Michael Cole is doing an amazing job. On my very best day I couldn't carry Michael Cole's bags to the arena. He has the ability; he's just not produced in a way that allows us to see it."
If you use any of the quotes in this article, please credit 83 Weeks with a h/t to Wrestling Inc. for the transcription.