SK Exclusive: Were Drew McIntyre and Jim Ross both signed to sabotage World of Sport?
WWE are the stand alone top promotion in the wrestling world by a million miles, and they are intent on maintaining that million mile gap.
What's the story?
As discussed on the “Dirty Sheets’ Podcast, via our “DS Breaking News” show, the WWE set its sights on both Drew McIntyre and Jim Ross, to damage the advancement of ITV's World of Sport program, whose pilot show drew SIXTEEN times more viewers in the United Kingdom than the average episode of Raw, due to the availability of the TV channel it airs on.
You can listen to the podcast, below (length: 9 minutes).
In case you didn't know....
World of Sport is a British television sport program which ran on ITV between 2 January 1965 and 28 September 1985. It featured various sports and it would air British Wresting, usually at the 4 pm slot.
From 1985, wrestling began to air independently, on a show called “Wrestling with Kent Walton”, which was dropped in December 1988, prior to the popularity of the WWE, which began gaining momentum in the UK from early 1989, via its coverage on Sky Television, where it has remained ever since.
On 17 October 2016, ITV announced that they would be bringing back professional wrestling, which was by far World of Sport's most popular segment. World of Sport returned solely as a wrestling show, for what was originally a one-off show, but is now considered to be a pilot, on 31st December 2016.
It was taped on November 1st. With ITV being one of the 5 terrestrial TV channels in the United Kingdom, World of Sport was available to everyone in the UK, unlike the WWE which airs on Sky Sports, a subscription channel.
ITV was said to be pleased with the numbers the New Year’s Eve show/pilot did, therefore, World of Sport or WOS, as it is often referred to, was commissioned for a full season. Jim Ross, who called the pilot episode, was set to continue on as the voice of the promotion, while Drew Galloway was in advanced talks to be the face of the promotion.
The promotion crowned Grado as its champion on it's December 31st pilot show. On 23rd March, full details of the full season were released, when Impact Wrestling announced that they would be teaming with ITV on the show, with Jeff Jarrett now installed as an executive producer of a ten-episode season.
The show will be taping at Preston Guild Hall on 25th May and 26th May.
The heart of the matter
Despite clearly being the no.1 company in the world, the WWE do not wish to share the marketplace with any other company. Business is business. Upon recognising that WOS pulled TEN TIMES more viewers than the average episode of Raw gets here in the United Kingdom, the WWE acted swiftly in signing who they felt were the companies two top talents, the voice of the company and their prospective Centre-piece talent.
A source has indicated to me that, although the WWE have had their eye on Galloway for nearly 12 months, the fear he would carry WOS to bigger and better things, finally pushed the WWE into committing to re-signing him. They feel Drew has, to quote the cliche, "all the tools" to be a massive star.
Signing Jim Ross, on the other hand, was simply a case of the WWE wanting to hurt both New Japan and WOS, with the company currently not having any definitive role or projects for him.
Drew Galloway returned to the WWE for NXT. He is back under the name Drew McIntyre and looks set for a huge push. He looked tremendous in his debut. Jim Ross returned to the WWE at WrestleMania 33 to call the main event of the show. However, this was not the original plan.
Upon learning the WWE had acquired Ross, Mark Calloway himself requested to have JR call his final match.
Aside from AJ Styles, it could be argued that Drew Galloway is the best wrestler in the world. He's certainly the best wrestler over 250 pounds. He has been the stand-out performer on the independent scene since his 2014 release and deserves to be back in the WWE.
The fact that the WWE signed him because they felt threatened by what he could do for WOS, means that WWE see big star power in him. With his size, in-ring ability and mic skills, it's easy to see why. He reminds of Triple H between 1999-2002, prior to the formulation of Evolution.
Drew is the modern day GAME! He has improved massively on the independents since his release. He the benchmark for how released talents should react when released from the WWE, so much so, that many insiders use the term, "doing a Drew" when referring to an ex-WWE wrestler achieving great success on the independent circuit.
Jim Ross is back where he belongs. Although he won't be doing what he does best, which is calling pro-wrestling matches, his life body of work currently sits on the WWE Network. It would be only fitting if the WWE could find him a role on the Network accompany all of his great work.
Be sure to check out my Podcast, “The Dirty Sheets” for the latest breaking news, along with rumours and in-depth analysis. It is available via iTunes.
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