Ian Riccaboni reacts to the news of Ring of Honor's hiatus.
Ian Riccaboni has been the voice of Ring of Honor for several years following Kevin Kelly becoming the exclusive English voice of New Japan Pro Wrestling.
In the years that followed, Ian became one of the biggest supporters of the Ring of Honor brand. Proudly waving the banner this is for the promotion in the face of reimaginings, Champions coming and going, and now, in the face of even more uncertainty for Ring of Honor.
ROH recently announced that they would be going on hiatus after December to once again reimagine the promotion. Taking time to articulate his thoughts, Ian Riccaboni took to Twitter to reflect on his entire journey in wrestling saying that should Ring of Honor never start again, he may just hang up his headset.
I once thought I wanted to be a wrestler. By 16, I was already 6'0", 205 lbs - why not, right? And then I landed on my back about as clean as could be, chin tucked exactly one time while doing a high school project under Afa's supervision. I realized right that second it wasn't in the cards. But, I loved wrestling and I wanted to be a part of it! I also loved Rich Eisen, Stuart Scott, Keith Olbermann, Linda Cohn, etc. Maybe I could do what they did but do it about wrestling on TV?
For nearly eight years, I've lived my dream with Ring of Honor. For five of those, about a half of a million folks have welcomed me into their homes every week. It is a great privilege to continue the legacy of Dave, Lenny, The Hog, Kevin, and others before me.
ROH has bent over backwards for me in my time with the company. Countless flights change to accommodate my office schedule, canceling a Japan trip (with pay!) at their expense to ensure I was home for Nora's birth, helping support LGBTQ+ and literacy initiatives in my hometown of Allentown, PA, and more. Too many things to list. They believed in and cultivated me at age 30 (I was a late bloomer!) with very little prior experience.
Beyond ROH's treatment of talent during the pandemic, I often wish the fans had a tiny window into things like this. Ian K., Merch Todd, Gator, and Brown, and Chrissy and Bird before and with them. Made this place a family. Bobby Cruise and Todd Sinclair took me in like their own while Colt unselfishly lent me his credibility. And while I've had over 70 partners last time I counted, I've never had as much fun as I am having right now with Caprice.
The news of the hiatus was communicated professionally and with care but there are a lot of question marks. I will forever wear the three letters ROH with great pride and treasure my time here. Hopefully it is not over. I have reason for optimism that ROH will re-start in April. I hope I am a part of their plans.
I'm going to do the best I can with Caprice & enjoy every sandwich. I used to care about silly things like being the longest active uninterrupted television wrestling play-by-play person (I am! But will cede it soon.) or breaking my mentor Kevin's record of most episodes of TV (in jeopardy!) but the sobering circumstances have changed what’s important.
I have a select couple of things I'm interested in doing. I keep a day job. I am blessed that money is not a concern.
My goals now? Continue to maintain a profile to use any notoriety I have to give back to my hometown Call select wrestlers' matches Be the best ROH commentator I can be
I am humbled by the support I personally and ROH as an organization has received in the last few days. I am flattered by those seeking to bring me in and I am assessing opportunities one by one. If April doesn't come, it would break my heart and I will likely hang up the headset, so if you're doing something fun, let me know.
Ring of Honor has received an outpouring of love in the reactions of many of its Talent following the news. You can check out more reactions here.