“I still think I can do play-by-play even though others that may surround Vince [McMahon] think I can’t.”
Legendary wrestling announcer Jim Ross says he will leave WWE when his contract with the company expires at the end of this month.
Ross said Thursday on his podcast, "The Jim Ross Report," that he and Vince McMahon mutually agreed that Ross should seek other opportunities.
"I need to move on," Ross explained. "I still want to play in the game. I still want to stay busy. I still think I can do play-by-play even though others that may surround Vince [McMahon] think I can't."
Ross first joined WWE in 1993 and remained with the promotion until 2013. He returned in 2017 to call The Undertaker’s match against Roman Reigns at WrestleMania 33 and signed a two-year contract with WWE. Ross appeared on television only a handful of times, primarily on pre-show panels for big events.
Ross’s WrestleMania 33 appearance came only two weeks after his wife, Jan, was struck by a car and killed. With his wife no longer by his side, Ross expressed a desire to get out of the house more often.
"At this stage in my life where you’re an empty nester, and you lost your best friend … I need to stay busy," Ross said on the podcast. "I need to get back on the road. I need to get back out there and do what my passion leads me to. So that’s what I’m gonna be doing."
Due to his stature in the wrestling world, Ross will have no shortage of other opportunities. The natural speculation is that he will join All Elite Wrestling, the new company bankrolled by the Khan family and headlined by Cody Rhodes and The Young Bucks. Before the promotion had even been launched, Ross’s name was among the first tied to the project.