WWE Hall of Famer Jerry “The King” Lawler recently sat down with Cerrito Live, which is a radio show in Lawler’s home town of Memphis, Tennessee. In his interview, Lawler mentioned what could be a key announce team decision for WrestleMania 32 on April 3.
Lawler talked about how World Wrestling Entertainment is currently in talks about splitting the announce teams for this year’s WrestleMania. This would mean that Lawler and Mauro Ranallo would represent Smackdown by calling part of the show, while Michael Cole and JBL represent Raw by calling the other part of the show. Byron Saxton is currently on both shows, but we assume that he likely would sit in with Cole and JBL.
WWE has done this in the past for WrestleMania and PPV’s, but that was when the brand extension was put in place. The Smackdown announcers would call the Smackdown matches while the Raw announces called the Raw matches. Since the brand split is no longer in effect, this would be just a matter of splitting up the show. Although I do not think this is teasing a future brand split, I do think this would be a way for WWE to make Smackdown feel a little more important.
Mark’s reaction: I actually think this would be a pretty good idea, just for the simple fact that it means Mauro Ranallo gets an opportunity to call a few WrestleMania matches. Ranallo has been doing such a good job on Smackdown and I really like his announcing style. I do think it can also help Smackdown, even if it’s just a little bit.
Smackdown is slowly reaching the same viewership numbers on USA Network that it was on the Syfy channel. I’m sure WWE wants to boost the ratings a bit now that the awe of the brand’s big network move has worn off. It’s a smart way to keep Smackdown in the conscious of WWE fans, a lot of whom that are watching WrestleMania that probably don’t watch Smackdown. It’s more than WWE’s done for the blue brand in recent years so at least they’re making an effort. None of this is confirmed yet and even Lawler said that it’s not a done deal or anything like that, so there’s a chance it might end up not coming to fruition.
Since the WrestleMania broadcast is five hours including the Kickoff Show (the PPV is four hours), it would also be easier on the announcers if they split things up a bit.
Would you like to see Ranallo and Lawler call part of WrestleMania 32? Leave any of your thoughts in the comment section below.