From Our CBS Music Sites
This year’s Fan Fest is just around the corner, and we are adding more and more special names to our lineup of celebrities and athletes.
WWE Legend Jim Ross™ and WWE Legend Jerry “The King” Lawler® are now a part of our big event.
To put it bluntly, Jim Ross is a sports-entertainment institution.
As the play-by-play man on Monday Night Raw for nearly a decade, the tough Oklahoman has the resume to earn himself serious consideration as one of the greatest commentators in the history of the business. Coining the phrase “business is about to pick up” and sporting his trademark black Resistol cowboy hat, Good Ol’ J.R. has been a WWE staple in the broadcast booth since 1993.
With his unmatched passion and unmistakable southern twang, J.R. called the action on television to millions of fans worldwide each week. A walking wrestling encyclopedia, the 2007 WWE Hall of Fame inductee takes great pride in knowing all the stats and inside info on WWE Superstars.
However, J.R. isn’t someone who is afraid of getting knee-deep in the action he’s calling. From time to time, J.R. has even gone as far as to knuckle up and throw down in the center of the ring with Superstars like Jack Swagger and Triple H.
Still, Ross is at his best when he’s at ringside, beautifully calling the action of the business he’s loved his entire life.
It’s good to be the king. Just ask Jerry Lawler.
Reigning over sports-entertainment since the 1970s, Jerry “The King” Lawler has thrilled in the ring as the fighting pride of Memphis, Tenn. and entertained from the announce table as Raw’s most irrepressible broadcaster. Effective as both a hero and villain, The King enraged WWE fans when he offended Bret Hart’s mother during a personal rivalry with The Hit Man and then inspired them when he stepped in the ring to challenge The Miz for the WWE Title at 61 years of age. This aptitude for every aspect of sports-entertainment has earned Lawler countless titles, legions of fans and entry into the WWE Hall of Fame.
Before all that, though, The King made his name in the Tennessee area prior to gaining national attention for his rivalry with comedian Andy Kaufman. Claiming to be the “Inter-Gender Wrestling Champion of the World,” Kaufman made the mistake of insulting The King in front of his hometown crowd in the Mid-South Coliseum in 1982. Lawler responded by blasting the “Taxi” actor with two piledrivers, which led to an incendiary showdown on “Late Night with David Letterman.” During a tense interview on the program, Kaufman once again offended The King, leading Lawler to slap the comic right out of his chair in front of a shocked studio audience. Fifteen years later, the WWE Hall of Famer recreated this legendary TV moment with Jim Carrey on the set of the Andy Kaufman biopic, “Man on the Moon.”
After dispatching of Kaufman, The King ruled over promotions like Minnesota’s AWA and Tennessee’s USWA before finally arriving in WWE in 1992. Caustic from the get go, Lawler used his sharp wit to rile up rivals like Bret “Hit Man” Hart and Doink the Clown before taking a seat at the announce booth to commentate alongside Jim Ross. Together, the duo formed one of sports-entertainment’s most entertaining broadcast teams as they deftly called the action of WWE’s booming “Attitude Era.”
Lawler’s voice has remained a staple of WWE programming ever since, but that hasn’t stopped him from getting in the ring. Often noted as one of the greatest Superstars to never hold the WWE Championship, The King nearly beat The Miz for the coveted title at Elimination Chamber in 2011 and took on his sniveling broadcast partner, Michael Cole, at WrestleMania XXVII. Competing in his fifth decade as a wrestler, Lawler proved that his piledriver — just like his wit — was still as devastating as ever.