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Tony Schiavone recalls a prank JJ Dillon pulled on Jim Ross during his early days on NWA TV


Tony Schiavone recalls a prank JJ Dillon pulled on Jim Ross during his early days on NWA TV

Tony Schiavone and Conrad Thomposn recently covered the 11/12/88 episode of World Championship Wrestling on TBS.

They talked about the behind-the-scenes friction between Ric Flair and Dusty Rhodes, a promo from Jim Cornette that was directed at Paul E. Dangerously (Paul Heyman), and much more.

Tony Schiavone talked about working with Jim Ross when Ross came to Jim Crockett Promotions in 1987: “It had a different feel to it because JR was now part of our broadcast team, which David (Crockett) did not like at all because at this point, JR and I were doing the commentary and David was just doing the interviews. JR had come in and disrupted the team of Tony and David doing the commentary together. So now it was Tony and JR. It started out with Tony, JR and David Crockett and David realized that Jim was like a bull in a China shop. Jim was very ambitious, a good guy, but very ambitious and it was very apparent that he was not shy about talking on camera. He was going to be JR, Jim Ross at that time. The same Jim Ross who was on Mid-South Wrestling was going to take advantage of a national TV spot. David kind of stepped back and JR took over that spot and David still did the interviews.”

Schiavone talked about a prank JJ Dillon pulled on Ross at TV during this time period: “He (Jim Ross) always rocked a pocket square. Jim would fly in from Dallas. There was one day that his flight was delayed. We delayed the TV Taping, not only because his flight was delayed, but also because there were a bunch of guys who haven’t arrived yet because of travel. Usually, we would do these on Saturday mornings. Jim is late and he’s mad because he’s late. Jim would always sit in first class like he still does today. Jim had, because of his anger, had probably a couple of drinks. He showed up really pissed off and I could tell he had been drinking a little bit. Nothing bad. We started the show and JJ came out and JJ was just egging Jim on saying, ‘Yea, so you’re flight was late?’, just trying to get Jim pissed off as JJ could really bust your balls. He grabbed Jim’s pocket square and pulled it out to where it was real long. We did the opening of the show with that long pocket square in. After we went to the first break, Jim noticed the pocket square was up. He looked at me and said, ‘Did you know this was like this?’ I said yea.  He said, ‘That Goddamn JJ. I just opened up a show and I look like a f***ing idiot.’ He was so f***ing mad at me. He was mad at me because I didn’t say anything but it was almost like 3,2, JJ pulls the pocket square up, 1 and we were on the air. He was so f***ng mad at me and JJ.”

If you use any portion of the quotes from this article please credit What Happened When with Tony Schiavone with a h/t to for the transcription