It's funny to think of how AEW and Jim Ross have gotten to this point in their relationship. It's almost as if you can't imagine the promotion without Ross' voice backing the action.
When the concept of AEW was first being rumored about in late 2018, many people thought it was so far-fetched it had to be another one of those crazy wrestling works. It sounded absolutely ludicrous.
The venerable veteran announcer, famous for his time in WWE, was suddenly going to work for a new company owned by a billionaire who also owns an NFL team? They are launching a rival promotion, and JR is involved? No way... What crazy dirt sheet came up with that story?
Fast forward to over three years later, and it almost seemed like a whirlwind ride for the Oklahoma native. He's provided steady commentary for the upstart promotion and has been candid in his criticisms when he feels they need to right the ship.
He's a voice of reason in more ways than one. His presence, aura, and (most of all) experience at the highest levels of sports entertainment warrant his opinion as being vital to a growing organization.
News came out this week that Jim Ross has reportedly signed an 18-month extension with AEW
Seeing that Ross will remain with the company for the foreseeable future is a positive thing. Not just for JR himself but also for professional wrestling in general.
Perhaps no other commentator in history has more of a connection with a wider fan base than Jim Ross does. Anyone who watched wrestling during the Monday Night Wars era can tell you that part of what tipped the scale was the superior work of JR and Jerry "The King" Lawler on commentary.
So in many ways, The Man in the Black Hat is just as important to the story as the performers in the ring who are telling it.
Anyone who knows Ross' story knows all the battles that he's had in life because he's been very open about them. His struggles with Bell's Palsy, the tragic loss of his beloved wife Jan, and a recent cancer scare have been some of the many adversities that this talented mic man has endured.
Yet, he trudges on. Because like the rest of us? He's a huge wrestling fan. It's in his blood.
Like every great sportscaster - from Howard Cosell to Keith Jackson - Ross is the punctuation behind every move that is made. Also, like the aforementioned legends, he doesn't put on a lot of airs. He's pretty much himself when he's calling the action. That, mixed with his genuine enthusiasm, is what made him the best in the game for so many years.
He became like your favorite uncle, with plenty of great stories and the ability to make you laugh. In other words, Ross made your entire viewing experience better by making you feel like you were part of the wrestling family. It's a rare and special talent for any commentator of any event.
But Good Ol' JR is not just a professional wrestling announcer. He's an executive, an entrepreneur, and a pop culture icon. He's also an invaluable piece of the puzzle for AEW, who are still piecing everything together now, three years after their launch.
Through it all, Jim Ross has been there and will continue to be. That's an excellent thing for AEW. He's done just about everything there is to do in the industry, and he's still not done yet. Boomer Sooner.
What are some of your favorite Jim Ross calls over the years? Are you glad that JR will be staying on commentary for AEW? Please share your thoughts and opinions in the comments section below.
We got the AEW Women's World Champion to run down the Forbidden Door Card with us here.