A wrestling podcast?
Yes you read correctly.
Everyone is already well aware of J-Stew’s affinity for the sport, but Grande is just as big a fan. Prior to Celtics games this past season, Grande caught up with former WWE announcer Jim Ross as well as Diamond Dallas Page.
In this podcast, the guys talked about the upcoming Ring Of Honor pay-per-view event, the future of CM Punk and Daniel Bryan, plus WWE’s Money In The Bank coming to Boston.
WWE is the king of the wrestling world. They have the biggest names on the biggest stage and make by far the most money. WWE is the Budweiser of the wrestling world, but other beers taste good too.
Ring Of Honor would qualify as one of those “other beers,” and Grande is a big fan of the product.
“I really like the product. If you’re a fan of the wrestling product, at its height it was when there was different things to choose from. Ring Of Honor is a different product. It reminds some of us of what it used to be in the old days. I love that it continues that way. There’s great, great talent,” said Grande.
There’s great talent in Ring Of Honor, including the next great villain in the business according to James Stewart: Massachusetts native Michael Bennett.
When Bennett is not talking trash to Felger & Mazz he’s making himself into a star in ROH, and Grande is surprised that he’s not quite there yet, acknowledging the process and how it takes times.
“You look at guys and say either ‘ready’ or ‘not ready’. And when you look at him you say that he’s ready,” said Grande.
“I think he’s been ready for awhile. It’s just a matter of time until he gets to that next level and becomes their champion or moves on,” added Stewart.
Ring Of Honor’s Best In The World pay-per-view is this Sunday night.
Switching gears, the guys discussed the curious case of CM Punk and his early retirement from the WWE. His well publicized feud with management following Royal Rumble led to his unceremonious exit.
Grande doesn’t think we’ve seen the last of Punk in the WWE.
“Instinctively you say no — he’s not coming back because he’s such an usual character. But Bret Hart was in a WWE ring again. Hulk Hogan was in a WWE ring again. Eric Bischoff showed up on Raw one night and the world just stopped. Do I believe he’ll be in a WWE ring again? It’s hard for me not to. What makes him unusual compared to 90% of the guys is that he’s saved his money,” said Grande.
Another wrestler with no return in sight is Daniel Bryan, who had to give up the WWE World Championship after suffering nerve damage in his neck.
Historically, WWE has had bad luck when it comes to champions getting injured, including The Undertaker, Edge, Kennedy and now Bryan. Grande (jokingly) thinks his marriage to Brie Bella should be investigated and not ruled out.
Both Stewart and Grande fear we may have seen the last of Bryan in the squared circle, but it’s still too early to be “deeply concerned.”
Listen below for the full discussion, including their take on WWE’s Money In The Bank coming to Boston in two weeks and much more: