Major Changes to New Japan Commentary on AXS TV; Jim Ross & Josh Barnett Out Going Forward?
Jim Ross and Josh Barnett are out as the voices of New Japan Pro Wrestling on AXS TV. Going forward, the network will instead be using the live English commentary original recorded on New Japan World, which will continue to operate under the leadership of Kevin Kelly.
According to the Wrestling Observer Newsletter, New Japan itself made the call to remove the WWE Hall of Famer and UFC icon, as they are now in charge of commentary for the show.
Don Callis will be brought in for major events, as part of a recently renewed relationship between the two. He has been confirmed to call the annual Tokyo Dome show alongside Kelly, but guest commentators will continue to be brought in for some of the minor tours going forward.
While this remains to be seen, it’s likely this will also effect any New Japan U.S. specials going forward. In the past, Jim Ross and Josh Barnett were used for each of those shows, even though Kelly was brought in for the events to record content for New Japan World.