The best of Jonathan Coachman
The Coach enters the 2006 Royal Rumble Match only to be greeted by a very determined Big Show.03/24/2014 - 16:45
Jonathan Coachman: Bio
Jonathan Coachman has had one of the most ecclectic careers in broadcasting. The Coach made the leap from local sports anchor to WWE in 2000 as a lovable, enthusiastic young backstage interviewer who would often find a way to entertain WWE fans with his antics during interviews with Superstars such as The Rock. Later, in 2002, Coachman took on another duty in addition to his backstage interviews. He became the lead announcer on Sunday Night Heat, working with such former Superstars as Al Snow, Lita and Tommy Dreamer as his rotating color commentators.
Coachman's broadcasting career took a turn during SummerSlam 2003 when he shocked everybody and sided with then-Raw General Manager Eric Bischoff over Shane McMahon. The move led to a change of attitude for Coachman and he instantly began a crusade against Jim Ross, Jerry Lawler and Stone Cold Steve Austin.
As Bischoff's and Coachman's working relationship progressed, they had their fair share of ups and downs. At Taboo Tuesday 2004, after he tried to help Bischoff out of getting his head shaved by Eugene, Mr. McMahon forced him to wear a dress for the remainder of the show. On the bright side, Coachman was rewarded with a spot in the 2005 Royal Rumble Match, where he lasted nearly 30 minutes (not a typo).
In June 2005, Coachman finally achieved the goal he had been working towards since the beginning: becoming part of the RAW announce team. His earlier 2 week tenure notwithstanding, Coachman became a full-time counterpart of J.R. and The King at Vengeance, and officially became the third man in the RAW booth the next night.
That December, Coachman's years of loyalty to Eric Bischoff earned him another reward. Mr. McMahon held a trial for Eric Bischoff, and Coachman was appointed as his defense attorney. Unfortunately, Coachman's legal skills paled in comparison to his announcing, as Bischoff was fired at the end of the trial.
Before 2005 ended, Coach got into the ring a few more times. He wrestled Ric Flair for the Intercontinental Championship on RAW's Holiday Tribute to the Troops, then used a handful of tights to defeat Jerry Lawler in January 2006 to qualify for the 2006 Royal Rumble Match. He was much less successful the second time around, getting eliminated by Big Show within a minute of entering the match.
Memorial Day 2006, Coachman was named Mr. McMahon's new Executive Assistant. He immediately thrust himself into the new role, making a match between Edge and Big Show to determine the No. 1 Contender for the WWE Championship.
Coachman was left in charge of the June 19 Raw, while Stephanie gave birth to Mr. McMahon's first granddaughter, but his first big task under Mr. McMahon was a disaster. The reunited D-Generation X ended up humiliating Coachman and the Spirit Squad, with the Executive Assistant getting his head put through a wall.
Still, Coachman continued to faithfully support Mr. McMahon, was then made Interim GM of Raw in mid-2006, and then returned to the Executive Assistant role later that year when William Regal was named General Manager of Raw.
Even with all that was on Coach's plate, WWE wasn't the only place he plied his trade. In the fall of 2005, Coachman also branched out into the world of sports play-by-play, calling football and basketball games for College Sports Television (now CBS Sports Network). He then began working as a host for the Madison Square Garden network in New York.
In 2008, The Coach left WWE for ESPN but never lost his love for sports-entertainment. In 2015, Coachman began a weekly segment on ESPN's flasgship program, SportsCenter called Off The Top Rope during which he presents his favorite moments from Monday Night Raw and interviews a WWE Superstar or Diva.