Jerry Lawler Claims Akira Tozawa Told Him 'Ramen Noodle Moonsault' Comment On WWE Raw Wasn't Racist
The King was replaced on Raw commentary shortly after
Jerry 'The King' Lawler has reflected on fan backlash to his 'Ramen Noodle Moonsault' line on WWE Raw commentary last year, indicating he does not believe the sentence was racist and claiming Akira Tozawa told him as much too.
Lawler was a part of the Raw commentary team at the start of the COVID-19 pandemic in April 2020, and called a match between Tozawa and Austin Theory. During the match, Tozawa hit a cannonball off the apron, which The King called a 'Ramen Noodle Moonsault'.
The comment was immediately met with a negative reaction on social media and King ended up being replaced by Samoa Joe on commentary. Reflecting on the incident, King claims that Tozawa himself said what Lawler said did not constitute a racist remark.
Speaking during a virtual signing with K & S WrestleFest, Lawler said: "This is so crazy. Just saying ‘Mr. Fuji’, if you’re trying to use a Japanese [accent], that’ll get you in trouble today. I mean that actually happened to me. That’s probably why I’m not on Raw right now.
"I did a lot of work with — and doing the WWE 2K Battlegrounds video game. I worked with Mauro Ranallo and he and I did the voice[over] on that game and I love working with Mauro. He was so funny. But he didn’t mean to be funny.
"I mean he’s always dead serious about everything and we’re watching — they had us in a little studio and this big screen had all of the fights, the action was going on and we’re having to call the action so to go with what we were seeing and you know how Mauro, I guess he had called New Japan Wrestling before and everything so he’s on it going, ‘Oh! Look at this spinning dragon, wizard flying’ and I kept looking at him then the next thing is, ‘Oh, there’s –’ I mean he would make up these crazy names. I even told him, I said, ‘Mauro, you’re making that up. You know you are.’ ‘Oh no King! That’s really the name of it.’ So he would do that so much that I thought it was funny.
"So then one day I’m doing Raw and [Akira] Tozawa is in the match, right? And Byron Saxton — Tozawa does some kind of [move] and then we’re on live, you gotta remember we’re on live and now Byron says, ‘Oh there it is! The spinning dragon’ something and I’m just thinking, ‘Oh, you made that up’, right? And so the next thing, he goes to the top of the rope and he flies off and I looked at Byron and I said, ‘Oh look, there’s a ramen noodle moonsault.’ What is racist about that? All of a sudden — I thought it was funny. That’s a ridiculous name, right?
"And all of a sudden, the internet blows up. ‘Oh, King’s a racist,’ and even Tozawa, the next week comes back, says, ‘It’s nothing racist. I eat ramen noodles every week.’ But the next week I wasn’t on Raw anymore. So I don’t know if that’s what happened but anyway, you gotta be very careful so I should probably not say ‘Mr. Fuji’ [with an accent]."
H/T POST Wrestling