For weeks, the WWE has teased a “special guest referee” for the tag-team title rematch between The Usos and The Street Profits at SummerSlam 2022. Could it be the honorary Us, Sami Zayn? How about a superstar (real-life) member of The Bloodline like The Rock? Nope. It’s neither of those. The seemingly out-of-the-blue pick to officiate this title match is WWE Hall of Fame wrestler “Double J” Jeff Jarrett.
Why is Jeff Jarrett a guest referee at SummerSlam?
The Usos (Jimmy and Jey Uso) and The Street Profits (Montez Ford and Angelo Dawkins) faced off on July 2, 2022, at Money in the Bank for the Undisputed WWE Tag Team Championship. The Usos won a controversial match. That’s because when the ref counted to three on Ford, his shoulder wasn’t fully on the mat.
The tag teams continued their feud in the interceding weeks. And the bad blood between the two groups has only intensified.
Now, as the two duos get set to wrestle once again at SummerSlam 2022 in Nashville, Tennessee, WWE official Adam Pearce has assigned a special guest referee to the proceedings.
In a surprising and somewhat underwhelming announcement on Friday Night Smackdown, Pearce announced WWE Hall of Fame wrestler “Double J” Jeff Jarrett will be that referee.
The country-music-themed character known for his strutting, snappy walk, and guitar-busting antics seems like an odd choice. After two decades of running his own promotions, Jarrett did rejoin the WWE as Senior Vice President of Live Events. However, unlike the McMahons or Triple H, Jarrett hasn’t had much of an on-screen presence since his most recent return to the WWE.
Likely the biggest reason that “J-E-Double-F J-A-Double-R-E-Double-T” is that the event is in his hometown of Nashville.
Jarrett was born in Hendersonville, Tennessee, a northeast suburb of Nashville, in 1967 and grew up in the area. He is still a presence in the Nashville area. You can occasionally find him helping rev up the crowd for the NHL’s Nashville Predators.
Jarrett might not get a massive pop as a special guest referee in much of the WWE universe, but he should in his hometown.
The pro wrestling career of “Double J”
Jeff Jarrett had a Hall of Fame career as a WWE and WCW wrestler, bouncing back and forth between the two companies from 1992 to 2003.
“Double J” held the North American Championship, European Championship, Intercontinental Championship, and Tag Team Championship (with Owen Hart) in WWF/WWE. He was also a WCW World Heavyweight and United States Heavyweight champion.
Throughout his career, Jarret had memorable feuds with wrestlers like The Undertaker, Doink the Clown, The Four Horsemen, Chyna, Dusty Rhodes, and Dustin Rhodes (formerly Goldust). Many of the feuds ended (or escalated) with Jarrett breaking a guitar over the opponent’s head.
After leaving the Vince McMahon fold, he became one of the most important pro wrestling promoters in the last 20 years.
Along with his father Jerry — one of the most influential wrestling promoters of the 1970s and 80s, with his partner Jerry “The King” Lawler — the Jarrett’s started Total Nonstop Action Wrestling (TNA) in 2002.
TNA (now Impact Wrestling) has featured tons of current and former stars over the years. Among this group, with Jarrett, are Ric Flair, A.J. Styles, Sting, Christian Cage, Samoa Joe, Bully Ray and Devon (formerly the Dudley Boyz), Kurt Angle, and many others.
Jarrett returned to WWE in 2019 as a producer, left in 2021, and returned in 2022 to take his current position of Senior Vice President of Live Events. And special guest SummerSlam referee, of course.