Tom Phillips Was Surprised At Being Replaced On WWE Raw
Adnan Virk took over as lead announcer following WrestleMania 37
Tom Phillips took over lead announcing duties on Monday Night Raw back in January 2020 and he was in the role for over a year before being replaced by Adnan Virk following WrestleMania 37.
Phillips moved over to 205 Live following the switch, but he has since been released by the company and is currently a free agent.
The former commentator was the latest guest on Sports Media with Richard Deitsch and Phillips admitted he was surprised at being replaced on Monday Night Raw.
"I can honestly say I was surprised. Adnan Virk was somebody that I had known - not to date him in any way - but he had a run on SportsCenter when I was in college and then just right out of college. I watched him for years. So when I hear, 'Hey, Adnan Virk is coming in to be the lead announcer for Monday Night Raw,' I was like, 'Woah, that is a shift,'" Phillips said.
"But at the same time, I have all the respect in the world for this guy's ability in terms of what the job of Raw and SmackDown requires. What everybody refers to commonly in play-by-play as traffic. Getting from graphics to B-roll to an interview etc. I was like, well this guy did SportsCenter which is just one-way traffic. And then he did college football halftime shows. So I was like, yeah, this guy's probably got the skill set to do this. So I was definitely surprised, but at the same time, to hear it was the name of somebody like Adnan Virk I was like, okay, I get it."
Virk would ultimately only last six weeks on Raw before he and WWE agreed to part ways and Phillips was surprised at how short the sportscaster's time on the red brand was.
"I was to be very honest," Phillips added. "Because I've seen so many different people come and go at different levels of the announce team and different spots of the announce team. I won't speak to necessarily what he was going through because that's what his experience was, so I can't really speak to that. But it was fast.
"But that being said, he has so many other things that he does in conventional sportscasting where he is so talented and he's going to do just fine. I don't need to say that, he knows that."