As a guest on the Joe Rogan Experience exclusive on Spotify, The Undertaker said that he felt that the current WWE product was “a little soft”. On a recent episode of Grilling JR, Jim Ross agreed with The Undertaker’s assessment on the current state of wrestlers. Ross explained why he felt wrestlers nowadays aren’t as tough as they used to be.
“Because they’re trained differently,” Ross said. “They’re brought into the business differently, they’re not sitting in a car, they’re not making 25-40 bucks a night. It’s just a different ball game and Takers got a good point there. Today’s wrestling getting chopped unmercifully to where your blood is rushing to the surface and bruising is already in affect, probably wouldn’t happen in today’s world because the offending person wouldn’t stand for it.
Ross made sure to mention that the changes in the business are not a negative. He noted that just because there have been changes doesn’t mean that they haven’t been a positive for the entire wrestling business as a whole.
“The COVID era of pro wrestling in a way has been a career extender for a lot of talents,” Ross noted. “They’re not on the road as much, they’re not traveling as much, they’ve got time to heel and focus on one major project. We always wanted the business to be better.
“You’re right about the business being better, could you imagine how much better it is right now than it was just a few years ago? Some of these things we were talking about [back in the day] weren’t as negative. Does that mean they shouldn’t have been changed? No, it just means it was more accepted in that era than some things are today.”
Hardcore Holly was the topic of discussion on the show and Ross mentioned Holly’s relationship with his tag team partner Crash Holly. Ross said there was one time where he had to calm Holly down from threatening Crash.
“As well as Bob is going to get along with anybody,” Ross said. “I think that Bob tolerated Crash well, he was younger and mischievous. There was that one time where Bob said he was going to kill him and we talked that through. The decision to murder was omitted from the equation.”
Ross also talked about Holly’s time on Tough Enough and an incident that he had with trainee Matt Cappotelli. On the show, Holly aggressive struck Cappotelli several times in the chest causing him to bleed. Cappotelli ended up winning the show, but the image of Holly being aggressive with him left a bad taste for many people.
“It wasn’t good,” Ross said. “I don’t know if it went all the way to an HR issue, it would’ve now. Today it wouldn’t pass at all. I’m a big believer that sometimes karma is a b---h. Matt Cappotelli, poor Matt battled cancer for seemingly forever and he was very popular.
“People knew he was fighting an enemy that many of us never even thought of. So, it wasn’t good. Bob got carried away and went over the line on some of this stuff. Vince wanted a character on that show and with that, here comes Bob Holly.”
Ross also talked about the 24/7 Championship that has been in the WWE for years. He said that type of match and 24/7 concept has run its course in the company.
“It’s a T.V. gimmick that’s run its course,” Ross said. “It was cool, kind of fun in the beginning, but like so many wrestling storylines or angles, it overstayed its welcome. It never appealed to me. I’m glad that guys got the opportunity to get increased television time because of it but it wasn’t my cup of tea.
“It was in the beginning but I think it’s overstayed its welcome.”
If you use any of the quotes in this article, please credit Grilling JR Podcast with a h/t to Wrestling Inc. for the transcription.