Former WCW and TNA announcer Scott Hudson didn’t hold back in a two-hour conversation with IYH Wrestling Radio, unloading on WWE announcers Michael Cole and John “Bradshaw” Layfield, the failed Invasion angle, and WWE using Reid Flair’s death in an angle with Charlotte and Paige.
Excerpts from the interview, provided by host Vic Vic Schiavone, are as follows:
On the current state of wrestling commentary:
“Well first, Michael Cole sucks. That guy couldn’t call a one-horse race. Unfortunately, the best announcer they have on RAW is Byron Saxton, and they don’t let him show his stuff. JBL…he’s terrible, he’s horrible…They don’t know what to do, but then again I’ll give Cole at least a little bit of credit in that he’s doing what he’s told. If he wasn’t doing what he was told, he would be working for Joey Styles at the dot com office. And that’s sad, is that they’ve got the best announcer in the last twenty years on staff not announcing. The guy for New Japan, Mauro Ranallo, he’s the best announcer in wrestling and it’s not even close. He’s fantastic. The guys on Ring of Honor, Kevin Kelly and the rest of that bunch, they’re good, too. But the announcing on basically every WWE product across platforms is atrocious.
I’ve gotta say this, I’m a huge mark for The King (Jerry Lawler); he could read things out of the phone book and I would listen. So I love The King, take him out of that equation, otherwise the announcers there are worthless. But, to their everlasting credit, they’re doing what they’re told. And Vince (McMahon) is happy as a clam, watching ratings…and viewership and everything else and gimmick sales go right in the tank.”
On WWE’s Invasion angle:
“Keep this in mind…when they bought us out, should there ever have been a bigger angle than the Invasion Angle? Because you had ECW (Extreme Championship Wrestling) thrown in there, too…That angle, start to finish, should still be going today, fourteen years later. And the problem is one person’s fault, and that’s Vince McMahon. He would not in his dying breath put over a WCW talent or an ECW talent. Now…some guys got over in spite of Vince trying to bury them, but Vince’s whole idea was to bury both companies. It wasn’t to make money by saying “Oh my God, this is WCW vs. WWE vs. ECW”, it was “This is WWE, stop. WCW and ECW guys are job guys.” That’s all he wanted, that’s all he saw, and he did not care that he was sitting on a 20-million dollar profit. He was comfortable with a 2-million dollar profit because he got to bury WCW and ECW.”
On the current state of wrestling:
“Actually I like all the guys in The Shield, the Wyatt Family guys are entertaining to watch, but the guys out there now, to bring this whole show full circle, it’s all promos. When we had WCW, we had the Power Plant and we brought in the bunch called The Natural Born Thrillers ((Chuck) Palumbo, (Mark) Jindrak, (Shawn) Stasiak, Reno, Mike Sanders). All those guys, with the exception of Sanders, they were all horrible promos. I mean, terrible. But they were great athletes…I mean you go back and watch that stuff they were incredible workers, but they couldn’t cut a promo if you had a gun to their head…And it’s like The Natural Born Thrillers are now the entire roster of the WWE top to bottom: great looking guys, average to fantastic workers, no promo ability; none. I think I mentioned on some discussion the other night that I had online that listening to Roman Reigns cut a promo has all the fire of a Dr. Ben Carson haiku reading. And that’s probably being kind to both of them.”
On WWE using Reid Flair’s death as part of an angle:
“Well, there’s been so much made of that from Monday night with Charlotte and Paige, but…has the death of Ric Flair’s son ever been used in an angle before? No. But has something as disgusting because it’s real been used in a promotional angle before? Sure…Katie Vick…Hunter accused Kane of murdering and I guess burying a high-school cheerleader…That obviously wasn’t real, but that’s disgusting. And there have been other disgusting things like Blackjack Mulligan’s heart attack…there was a David and Mike Von Erich memorial parade of champions…they named the show after the two dead guys, much less invoking the name of Reid Flair Mondaynight on RAW. The fact that it’s raising so many eyebrows means that wrestling might have actually not had to resort to that level of angle to get stuff over for so long that this seems so disgusting when in the whole course of history it has been lapped several times in the disgusting category.”