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Wrestling / Tony Schiavone

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Noah Anthony "Tony" Schiavone (born on November 7, 1957) is an American sports broadcaster and professional wrestling commentator.

He started out working as a minor league baseball commentator before being hired by Jim Crockett Promotions (which would later become WCW in 1988) as a play-by-play commentator in the mid-80s. He left in April of 1989 for a brief stint in the World Wrestling Federation that lasted until April 1990, after which he returned to WCW, eventually becoming its lead play-by-play announcer in the Monday Night Wars.

After WCW went out of business in 2001, Schiavone retired from wrestling commentary (though he made a brief appearance for TNA in 2003) and worked as a minor league baseball announcer and morning sports anchor for both WDUN in Gainesville and WSB-AM in Atlanta simultaneously.

On January 30, 2017, Tony began hosting the What Happened When podcast with Conrad Thompson on MLW Radio, discussing stories from his WCW days. He would return to wrestling commentary on October 5 of that same year, providing color commentary for the resurrected Major League Wrestling promotion.

On August 26, 2019, he revealed in a Being the Elite episode that he would be working for All Elite Wrestling.

In 2021, he announced a Kickstarter campaign for a biographical graphic novel titled Butts in Seats: The Tony Schiavone Story.

"The biggest tropes in the history of our great sport!"

  • Alternate Company Equivalent: He was more or less WCW's equivalent to Jim Ross. Others also compare him to Michael Cole, since both became "the voice" of their promotion after Ross departed.
  • Awful Wedded Life: He likes to joke about his marriage on What Happened When.
  • Combat Commentator: He was WCW's lead announcer from the mid-90s until its demise.
  • Cluster F-Bomb: On both his podcast and his Twitter account, he's no stranger to swearing. Even on the PG WCW programming, he swore the most out of all the announcers.
  • Deadpan Snarker: He had a very dry wit, which you'd have to be to deal with Bobby Heenan. He also has a tendency to rip into Trolls and haters on Twitter.
  • Dirty Old Man: He has openly fawned over the attractive women that passed through WCW (usually Debra Marshall or Madusa) when reminiscing on his time on the company on his WHW podcast even though he's married, which Conrad has called him out for.
  • Don't Explain the Joke: Yes, Tony, we understand the meaning of Hugh Morrus' Punny Name without you pronouncing it "humorous".
  • He's Back!: Returned to wrestling commentary in 2017 for Major League Wrestling. Two years later, he announced he would be a part of All Elite Wrestling alongside his old colleague Jim Ross.
  • Hoist by His Own Petard: He infamously announced that Mick Foley would win the WWF Championship in advance on WCW programming (since at the time Raw was pre-taped), saying that it would 'put a lot of butts in seats' sarcastically, leading to millions of fans switching over to watch Foley win the belt on Raw. To be fair, he was ordered to say that by Eric Bischoff.
  • I Was Just Joking: He's technically responsible for David Arquette becoming WCW Champion. As the story goes, he suggested it as a joke at a booking meeting, everyone laughed...and then Vince Russo, WCW's head booker at the time, thought it was a great idea.
  • Insult of Endearment: Calls his fans "slapdicks".
  • It's the Best Whatever, Ever!: He proclaimed almost everything to be "The greatest/biggest event in the history of our great sport!"
  • Large-Ham Announcer: Was known for his over-the-top style of delivery that demanded attention.
  • The Nicknamer: Gave Mike Tenay his Red Baron "The Professor".
  • Papa Wolf: He revealed on an AEW webcast that Adam Cole had specifically asked him to look after Cole's real-life girlfriend Britt Baker and help keep her out of trouble. (This was before Cole joined them in AEW.)
  • Porn Stache: In the 1980s during his stint with the NWA.
  • Precision F-Strike:
    • After Hulk Hogan's Face–Heel Turn, his last words before Bash at the Beach '96 went off the air were "Hulk Hogan, you can go to Hell. Straight to Hell!" He also made it up on the fly, as he did with most of his commentary prior to WCW's twilight.
    • In AEW, after Dr. Britt Baker D.M.D. tried to humiliate him by revealing he once worked at a Starbucks, Tony silently mouthed "What the fuck?" to the camera.
  • Product Placement: Shilling WCW itself.
  • Self-Deprecation: Does this big time on social media and his podcasts.
  • Spotlight-Stealing Squad: He became this by 1998, being present on Nitro, Thunder, and most of WCW's pay-per-views. That much exposure will make anyone sick of you.
  • Straight Man: Was this on commentary, often playing off his zanier partners.
  • Take That!: Tony took a cheeky shot at the late-era WCW nonsense he had to call in the last few years before the company went out of business when he was commentating the AEW Puppy Battle Royale.
    "This match is better than anything I called back in 2000."
    • When Tony Khan joined Schiavone for a paid ad during the episode of Impact Wrestling where new AEW champion Kenny Omega appeared with the AEW belt, Khan brought up Schiavone's one-off appearance on the former TNA:
      Khan: You- you spent a cup of coffee in Impact Wrestling yourself, didn't you Tony?
      Schiavone: Yeah, one night, and then I quit the business for eighteen years.
  • Unknown Rival: Bobby Heenan had a long history of speaking very negatively about Tony, especially in Heenan's autobiography. Tony has claimed he held no ill will towards Bobby, always speaking highly of him and never reciprocating the potshots.