Michael Cole Comments On The Differences Between Commentating On Professional Wrestling And Sports Entertainment
There is a clear difference between wrestling and sports entertainment according to Michael Cole
For years pro wrestling fans have debated if there’s any difference between ‘pro wrestling ‘ and ‘sports entertainment’, with the latter being the go to phrase for WWE.
Michael Cole has waded into the decades long debate, telling The Press Box about the differences between the two:
“We’re not a wrestling company. WWE is an entertainment company. So the style that I utilise and the style that many people that work for me here in WWE utilise, is what I like to call sports entertainment announcing. A lot of people laugh at me about that. They’ll make jokes about it. But what we do here is much different than what they may do in other companies, because many of those companies, and rightfully so, and proudly so, are professional wrestling organisations. We’re a sports entertainment product.
“I’m going to date myself here, but some people will understand this. Back in the late 70s and early 80s, there was a television show called Taxi. Taxi was based in a taxi garage in New York City. What made that show interesting, and the reason it was one of the number one shows on television is because people became emotionally invested in these characters. That’s what sold the product. That’s why people watched, not because they were cab drivers in a garage. They were emotionally invested in their characters.
“It’s the same thing with WWE. We just happen to use a wrestling ring as our focal point of where our conflicts are resolved. But in order for our business to be successful, you have to become emotionally invested in the characters and what we are selling. The majority of the people that watch our product, they enjoy wrestling of course, but they also get really into the soap opera style of what we do. There’s a lot of other companies out there that do strictly wrestling, and that’s cool. You’re going to call a wrestling match much different than you’re going to call a sports entertainment match. We focus a lot on stories. We’re storytellers more than we’re play-by-play guys or colour analysts, and I think that’s really where the difference lies.”