Source: The Ross Report

On episode 147 of The Ross Report, legendary professional wrestling broadcaster Jim Ross talked about the recent WWE TLC live event special in great detail.

According to Ross, the WWE SmackDown Live Tag Team Championship match between Heath Slater and Rhyno and Randy Orton and Bray Wyatt was passable, though he is excited to see where things go with the new Wyatt Family. Moreover, Ross hopes that 'Beauty & The Man Beast' will continue on as a team.

"The match was okay. I like finish and I like the potential of Randy Orton and Bray Wyatt and Luke Harper to see where they go. I hope they get some legs to their creative and some input, and they step up and give input. They all should contribute to their creative and make it better, so I'm optimistic that creative could go for those three guys."

Ross said, "okay, real quickly, I hope the work that has been put in with Heath Slater and Rhyno [has not] been for naught. A lot of TV time, the fans kind of like them, they're a solid team, they're reliable, good on the road. I think you want to maintain them somehow."

Ross professed that Wyatt is the biggest character babyface WWE has had in years.

"I like the combination of Randy Orton and Bray Wyatt." Ross continued, "I've said this on the show for, God, over a year: Bray Wyatt is potentially the biggest character babyface in WWE in years. Years. A character babyface. He's what Mankind was as a babyface. He's what Dusty Rhodes was in Florida. That's what a character babyface is. Junkyard Dog was a character babyface. He was unorthodox. He wasn't run-of-the-mill. He wasn't the type of cat you see in the neighborhood all the time. He's unique and Bray Wyatt and Randy Orton, together, along with Luke Harper, who I think is underutilized, all three have the ability, with a little bit of tweaking and holding your mouth the right way, as granny would say, to be massive character babyfaces along the lines of kind of being coarse and rough, rugged, kind of Attitude Era-like. So I think Orton and Bray Wyatt have a lot going for them, and, if they do the Freebird Rule, three-man team, that would give Luke Harper new life."

In Ross' view, the TLC main event with AJ Styles and Dean Ambrose may have been the best match of the year and that he does not know if he has ever seen a better ladder match. Also, Ross argued that 'The Champ That Runs The Camp' is a babyface because the audience respects his in-ring ability.  

"AJ and Dean Ambrose just had a brilliant ladder match, maybe the match of the year. I don't know if there's any match that I can think of, there are probably great matches, I'm sure there are, obviously, yeah. I can't think of one that blew that away and I called some damn good ones for New Japan [Pro-Wrestling], my Friday night gig on AXS TV with my good friend, Josh L. Barnett. So I really thought those guys went above and beyond. I said on Twitter on Sunday night that I truly believe that AJ Styles is the best in-ring performer today. I'm so glad he's at WWE."

Ross elaborated, "but those guys, Ambrose [and] AJ had a great match, absolutely phenomenal, no pun intended. Hat's off to both guys. Jeez, a great way to close the show. Really amazing match. I mean, I don't know when I've seen a better ladder match. I've got to think about that. The [James] Ellsworth business was unique. Ellsworth allegedly now being a heel. Here's the funny thing about that: Ellsworth turns on Ambrose 'costing' Ambrose the WWE [World] title. I get that. Ellsworth is the heel for helping AJ. But the audience, even when Ambrose was climbing the ladder, the fans were chanting for AJ. AJ's a babyface! The fans love his work. They respect what he does, so it's going to be hard for people to boo him unless he works his ass off to be this absolutely horrible, abhorrent personality. But then, when the bell rings and you see what he does, with his athletic ability, get in awe of what he executes."

As well, Ross described Styles as the closest thing to Shawn Michaels in his prime.

"He's the closest thing to Shawn Michaels in Shawn's prime that I can recall seeing and if you're like me, maybe you're not, I think Shawn Michaels is the greatest all around in-ring performer that I ever saw in the [professional wrestling] business. Shame on me for having an opinion."

In addition to reviewing WWE's TLC event, Ross spoke with MMA veteran Chael Sonnen on this addition of 'Slobberknocker Audio'. Check out the podcast here. If you use any of the quotes from this article, please credit The Ross Report with an H/T to Wrestling Inc. for the transcription.

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