RAW/Vegas..Punk Countdown..HBK/Hitman Questions Abound..Happy B-Day JJ..UFC/Pitt..Order JR's @ WWEShop!

Wow...the heat index is set to exceed 110 degrees here today. Likely no yard work for me...that was a joke. It's damned near too hot to grill until the sun goes down. Let's roll..

MNR in Vegas tonight. WWE doing two Raws which is always a challenge for all involved but they do it better than anyone ever has these days. First show will go live at 6 Vegas time and the second show will likely start taping around 8:30 Vegas time to air on July 4.

It's hell week for WWE TV personnel as they have their 'doubleheader' tonight and then two more, consecutive days of Smackdown tapings Tuesday and Wednesday. I've been a part of many of these marathon weeks and I can assure you that one really has to pay attention, take great notes and sleep when one can or announcing and continuity mistakes can easily occur. I hear that UFC TV production personnel are experiencing 'burn out' to some degree with all the TV's that they have been doing lately, too.  

It will be fun to see Sin Cara vs. Even Bourne for those who like the flying stuff. Both guys are talented and I'm curious to see if they have in ring chemistry with the other. I hope that sooner than later Sin Cara can begin to speak some English as that will help him connect better with what could be a sizable audience for the Mexican star as time goes on. 

Vegas was always one of my favorite cites to work in because we usually got off the air early, when doing one live Raw, and there's plenty to do there including some amazing restaurants, etc. We were there last year around this time for the Lesnar-Carwin fight that was the UFC main event during the July 4th weekend. Had dinner with former OU Sooners and current NFL players Sam Bradford, Brody Eldridge, and Jon Cooper on the 4th. I'm dropping more names than Larry King and you won't see this sort of info reprinted on the wrestling websites because it's not topical. 

@shawnmichaels_ and @brethart and I talked about WM9 in Vegas which was my first live WWE event (toga) where Shawn wrestled Tatanka and Bret lost the WWE Title to a fatigued Yokozuna. Not the most auspicious of nights for either HOF'er but they discussed this era and this event in detail when we did our DVD sit down last week. Again, that project is slated to be released in October. 

I've gotten more emails and Tweets @JRsBBQ  about this topic than any individual top in years. Some of the questions are so embarrassingly bad that I've deleted then to protect the innocent. Every thing to what the guys were wearing to what they had for breakfast to whether or not their answers were all scripted to if they physically fought on the set. 

The interview was real. The answers were real. They did not know the questions that I was going to ask ahead of time. Their reactions were real. I realize that because of the genre that there will be doubters but when one sees the finished product I think all concerns about realism and honesty will be alleviated. Plus, this project wasn't solely about 'Montreal' even though  the '97 Survivor Series was throughly addressed.  

I'm very curious to see what @cmpunk says tonight on Raw about his upcoming departure which seems as if it will occur in Chicago, Punk's hometown, after the MITB PPV there in July. Punk is at the top of his game, without question, and I, for one, feel that the Raw TV shows leading into the Chicago PPV could be compelling as it relates to Punk. His loss will be significant but w/ any loss comes the opportunity for someone to step forward.

Happy belated birthday to JJ Dillon who turned 69 on June 26. JJ is a corrections officer in the Delaware penal system. He's told me that many inmates over the years remembered him as being the manager of the Four Horsemen and that he's never had an issue while in uniform or otherwise w/ his present occupation. JJ was smart in that he got his college degree before he went into the wrestling biz which helped him perpetuate his wrestling administration career and then find work in a completely different field. JJ is still a great wrestling mind and is a superb panelist on the Legends Roundtables. Remember that the Legends Roundtable regarding the nWo begins airing on WWE On Demand in July and it might be the best Roundtable that we've done to date. 

Speaking of WWE On Demand, I watched a 1982 Mid Atlantic Wrestling show this weekend where my old pal Bob Caudle handled the announcing with a stick mic and no headset for the entire hour all alone. Loved seeing Jack Brisco, Wahoo McDaniel, Sgt Slaughter and many other favorites including the duo of Ricky Steamboat and Jay Youngblood. Ironically every match on the one hour, TV studio show was a tag match on this particular episode.

Amazing finish Sunday night for the UFC show emanating from Pittsburgh. Congo's spaghetti legged, back against the cage, upper cut KO from left field over Pat Barry was a shocker. Barry seemingly was one punch away from having the fight stopped in his favor before Congo came from downtown with the difference maker. 

This was the close of an outstanding, FREE show on Versus for UFC during a week where they lost their main event featuring Nate Marquardt due to issues with the Pennsylvania Athletic Commission. Marquardt is allegedly going to 'come clean' on Tuesday regarding his 'issues' and the best advice I can provide the talented fighter who has been fired from UFC is to simply tell the truth. It might hurt like hell at the time but over the long haul the truth is always the best path to take on matters such as this in particular.

I like the charisma of UFC heavyweight Matt Mitrione who at 32 is undefeated and is rising up the ladder in MMA. I totally disagree that Mitrione is ready for a top five opponent and why would UFC risk building what they potentially have in the former NFL player w/ short sighted booking? I don't think that they will.

Mitrione is the kind of guy we loved to recruit in WWE when we could find athletes such as him in their early 20's. Athletically charismatic, tough guys can often times adapt to sports entertainment and are so competitive that they want to escape developmental ahead of schedule ala Brock Lesnar and Kurt Angle and get on the road to where they can earn serious money.

I read where Ken Shamrock, who adjusted to pro wrestling in WWE from MMA amazingly and better than any one I can imagine, had a 'pull apart' with his next opponent, boxer James Toney who Randy Couture guzzled several months ago in a UFC bout. I think that 'pull aparts' are becoming mandatory at all ring related press conferences and if not a 'pull apart' at least a head to head stare down.  

If you want to order the great, Gary Hart autobiography then check out http://www.playboygaryhart.net.  This one is a keeper and a 'must read' for students of the fame and legit, wrestling fans. 

Please cease and desist asking me how to get a job in WWE creative. There's a process that one should be able to ascertain if they are qualified and serious. WWE Human Resources has that info. If you're of the mindset to be a WWE writer more power to you. I couldn't personally handle it in this era but everyone should try and live their dreams if that is one's goal.

Also, I do NOT want to read any one's creative /storyline ideas. Not to sound like a tool, but I can't facilitate them and generally don't have the time to read them objectively. WWE has a process for that, too, and I can't provide any unwarranted shortcuts.

We're still addressing our on line store's temporary closing. We plan to have all the back orders shipped this week, preferably by Tuesday at the latest but that's a little out of our hands due to some cable/computer issues that we're waiting to get addressed. When we re-open our on line store is still TBD. Our business has grown to a level that we have to address how we handle it going forward. Good problem to have.

The Q&A's are updated here on the site and feel free to pose any questions that you like there.

In the meanwhile you can hit http://www.wweshop.com/Products/JimRoss as WWEShop is shipping in the USA and beyond. Ordering through WWEShop helps our family and provides your family with some great tasting products.

Thanks for stopping by and have a great day. Remember to follow us on Twitter @JRsBBQ.

Boomer Sooner!

J.R. 

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 Mr. Ross: Shawn Michaels squared off against Tatanka at Wrestlemania 9 in '93 in Las Vegas ... not against Rick Martel.  The Michaels-Martel match was at Summerslam 1992.  Sherri was involved in both matches.

hey there jr,

thank you for answering all of our questions but i have a toughy for you. speaking of "togamania" do you know the story behind hulks impromptu title win and the mysterious black eye he was sporting while getting the pin over yokozuna?

i know rumors and wrestling go together like ribs and good ole jrs bbq sauce (cheap pop) but i heard it was compliments of the hitman for having to step aside for hogan.... again.

any truth to that?

thank you again and enjoy the 4th!

leroy