When Smackdown debuts on the USA Network on January 7, a new voice will be leading the announcing booth, popular MMA and boxing announcer Mauro Ranallo. The news was reported yesterday by Yahoo! Sports’ Kevin Iole.
Ranallo has been doing commentary for Showtime Championship Boxing, Glory Kickboxing and Invicta Fighting Championships as well as doing play by play for New Japan Pro Wrestling on AXS TV. His new role on Smackdown will not be exclusive as Ranallo said that WWE allowed him to keep doing all the commentary for Showtime events, although his role at NJPW will probably not continue.
“The boyhood dream has come true for me. The fact that I get to do all of my passions in one calendar year, I can’t believe it yet,” Ranallo said. The life-long wrestling fan said that he was contacted by Michael Cole to see if he’s interested in doing Smackdown on USA.
“Pro wrestling was my first love and my first entry into broadcasting,” Ranallo added. “And here I am, about to turn 46 with nearly 30 years as a broadcaster and it’s come full circle.”