Dot Net Awards: 2012 Best Broadcaster
Dot Net readers voted on a variety of 2012 awards throughout the month of January. The following are the results of our poll for Best Broadcaster. Thanks to everyone who took part in the voting. You can check out the past winners in our Awards section.
(1) Jim Ross: 37 percent
(2) JBL: 27 percent
(3) Jerry Lawler: 14 percent
(4) Michael Cole: 10 percent
(5) Nigel McGuinness: 2 percent
Others: 10 percent
Chris Shore's Thoughts: It's me! OK, I'm not even close to the best, but neither were many people this year. Jim Ross was as good as ever the handful of times he called, but there's the catch. He only called a handful of times. Michael Cole deserves to be considered because of the way he handled the Jerry Lawler heart attack on the air. For me though, JBL was the guy that stood out the most. Yes, he had a limited year, only coming in when Lawler went down. But he stayed, and has made Josh Matthews a better commentator in the process of making Lalwer look old and uninterested at the same time. He continues to be the best announcer each week, so my pick is JBL.
Jason Powell's Thoughts: The part-time guys took home the honors (thought JBL eventually signed on to become a regular) and I'm not complaining. Michael Cole finally transitioned away from the tiresome heel schtick once Jerry Lawler suffered a heart attack. Ross is still the best in the business at what he does. JBL is a throwback heel color commentator and I wish there were more guys like him on the mic. ROH's Kevin Kelly gets my vote for third place. He definitely deserves a better ranking. Fortunately, Cole is once again doing good work as a straight forward play-by-play voice and he brings more to the table than The King does at this point. Lawler is a legend and that helps him get away with not being as prepared as he should be. There's definitely a place for Lawler. I just wish it was on the Friday night show at this point in his career. The TNA crew continues to be a mess. I wish someone would find a spot for the talented Steve Corino on color commentary. He was definitely add new life to the TNA product if they could lure him in from ROH.
Will Pruett's Thoughts: WWE had a major shakeup in the broadcasting this year when Jerry Lawler was out for a few months due to having a heart attack on the air. This lead to the return of John "Bradshaw" Layfield, Michael Cole becoming a more traditional play-by-play man, and Jim Ross being on WWE TV for a couple months. Sadly, as much as the WWE commentary situation improved, the best commentator in wrestling today is in TNA. Jeremy Borash brought a unique blend of passion and knowledge to TNA television, along with his fantastic voice. Borash proved, in limited commentary appearances, to be better than TNA's lead voice since its inception, Mike Tenay. Borash was my favorite voice on commentary last year and I hope to hear him more in 2013.
Jake Barnett’s Thoughts: This was another tough one. I don’t think Jim Ross appeared enough to get the nod here, despite how much I love his passion and style. JBL’s return was a real and demonstrable improvement to any booth he has been in, so he is going to be my choice for broadcaster of the year. After the failed experiment that was Booker T on commentary, I thought JBL provided a serious boost of credibility and charisma to the WWE announce team. It was especially nice to hear an actual heel color commentator again, as Michael Cole’s constant praise of heels while doing play by play was more of a distraction than anything else. JBL has done a lot to change my impressions of WWE commentary.
Ryan Kester's Thoughts: While my standard response to this award is to say Jim Ross and call it a day, I have to give this award to JBL. He was a breath of fresh air to the WWE product, and he has consistently made every show they have him on more enjoyable. Honorable mention goes to Michael Cole. If this was about how one handles themselves as a real broadcaster Cole is the sure win for how he handled Jerry Lawler’s heart attack, but I prefer to focus more on what the broadcaster adds as a whole. To me the man that added the most to a promotion’s product in 2012 was JBL.
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