US Wrestling Scene News

WWE: Paul Heyman has some harsh words about Mike Adamle’s first show

In his latest ‘Heyman Hustle’ column in The Sun here in the UK Paul Heyman has some harsh words about Mike Adamle who has just taken over the ECW announce position formally occupied by Joey Styles; this is the article in full:

OH BOY. I thought this was going to be a quiet week. No such thing, I guess.

In a decision that really threw everyone for a loop, WWE Chairman Vince McMahon and Executive Producer Kevin Dunn pulled Joey Styles from the position of ECW play-by-play announcer, and replaced him with the indescribably amateurish Mike Adamle.

The reaction was immediate. Even those who never saw Joey in the original Extreme Championship Wrestling were outraged.

Adamle’s performance was so terrible, it drew an intense reaction from even casual fans who couldn’t possibly care less, and who were ready to take a baseball bat and smash their television sets after listening to his butchering of the program.

I’m not being overly hard on Mike Adamle. It’s the old joke about Vince Russo going to WCW. Russo’s booking did such damage to the promotion, people in the industry actually believed Vince McMahon sent him to WCW to kill the company.

I’m not kidding. To this day, some people swear it had to be true. Mike Adamle couldn’t have done a more p***-poor job at announcing if he tried.

No self-sabotage could have been that consistent. Adamle called "WWE" just "WW". He called Tazz "The Tazz." He mispronounced names, couldn’t call holds, and his announcing debut was generally regarded as one of the worst in the history of broadcasting.

Now here’s a little secret. SHHHHHHHH…. don’t tell anyone.

For everyone who is so up in arms, screaming "we need to tell Vince what we think!" and "This guy’s a total disaster," I have a scoop for you, and you’re not going to like it.

Adamle is horrible. No one likes him. People at home actually loathe his presence on the show. AND THAT’S EXACTLY THE SORT OF PASSIONATE RESPONSE VINCE McMAHON IS LOOKING FOR!!!

Do you really think Vince doesn’t realise how incompetent this tra-la-la-goon-de-yay of an announcer is? The ECW show from the UK was TAPED.

That means there was time for Adamle to grab a mic backstage and clean up the performance. Not the whole miserable, horrible, intolerable hour. Just the really obvious "branding" issues, like all 3 letters that identify World Wrestling Entertainment. Hey, that would be a start, don’t you think?

Vince McMahon is not a fan of Joey Styles as an announcer. In 2005, when we were heading into the first ECW One Night Stand pay per view, the lead play-by-play spot was never put into the script.

Even a few weeks before the show, I was writing "announcers" because the decision still hadn’t been made to finalise the deal with Joey. Trivia note, by the way: The backup plan was to go with Jim Ross.

In memo to Vince, Stephanie, Shane, Kevin Dunn, and John Laurinaitis, I wrote "If we can’t come to terms with Styles – which I am very hopeful we can indeed do, because if we want this show to be "authentic," Joey has to be the play-by-play announcer – then a suggestion for the show without Joey is for Jim Ross to do it.

If the Heyman character does the dreaded ECW shoot promo on Raw, and walks up to JR and states that because we couldn’t come to terms with Joey, the only conceivable other answer would be you, JR, because while you’ve never been in ECW, we all respect your ability to call the product, and there’s not an ECW fan alive who deny that you are universally recognised as the best in the game…I would suggest everyone would accept JR in that role, and he would not disappoint on the night of the show."

But Joey did come to terms. And then, when Vince decided for the umteempth time to replace JR, Joey was signed to a five-year contract. And ever since about 10 minutes into Joey’s first broadcast, Vince has hated the decision to hire Joey Styles.

I lost more hair arguing that Joey needed to be the host of the resurrected brand in 2006 than I want to even remember. Vince thought of everyone else who could be in that chair. Everyone, of course, except for Mike Adamle.

OK, here it is. Oliver Stone can kiss my kosher a**. This conspiracy is presented to you … BECAUSE IT’S TRUE!!!

Vince McMahon is not only keenly aware of just how bad Mike Adamle is, he’s counting on it. That’s why there was no editing done to clean up Adamle’s embarrassingly bad performance.

WWE’s ECW is doing 1.2 and 1.3 ratings on Sci-Fi. That may keep Bonnie Hammer and Sci-Fi happy because very little else on that network comes close to that number, but I remember the panic setting in when the new ECW was "crashing" into the 2.1 zone.

The show has simply settled in with the audience that will watch whatever product is on, be it "Heat," "Velocity," "TNA," or any other lite version of Raw or Smackdown.

So Vince’s big idea for ECW is the train-wreck mentality! I can just see Vince right now, believing every word he himself says. "This guy is so bad, how can anyone NOT watch the show?" And he means it.

Vince actually believes that Mike Adamle is so mind-bogglingly awful, so ill-prepared, so horribly wrong for the show, that people will never be able to turn the dial. It’s the Britney Spears mentality. Is she wearing her panties today? Uh oh, she’s driving on the highway. Someone call the gossip blogs!

So, what have we learned today? Well, for one, the decision to remove Styles from the broadcasting position in favor of Adamle has dragged down the quality of the already-suffering show even more.

Number Two, that when a young, hungry, ambitious, qualified announcer like Josh Matthews, who has been waiting in the wings for half a decade, is passed over for an incompetent boob like Mike Adamle, there must be a good reason for it.

And three, that reason is because Vince McMahon is sure Adamle is so bad, people will look forward to his performances on ECW because of the very fact that you never know what he’s going to screw up next.

And in the end, if you realise that I’ve spent all this time writing about the decision, you have to give round one to Vince’s theory. Let’s check those ratings in a month. We’ll see how the theory pans out.

Until next time, E-C- …… um …… nevermind!