Lawler began his WWF career in December 1992 as an announcer on WWF Superstars of Wrestling. From 1993 to 1995, he feuded with Bret Hart and the rest of the Hart family. The feud began at King of the Ring when Lawler interrupted Hart's victory ceremony and attacked Bret. Lawler claimed that he was the only true king in the World Wrestling Federation (WWF), and the two were scheduled to wrestle at SummerSlam to settle the dispute. At the event, however, Lawler came to the ring on crutches and claimed that he could not wrestle because of injuries suffered in a car accident. Hart faced Lawler's "court jester", Doink the Clown instead, and beat him by submission. Lawler then attacked Hart, revealing that he was not injured. Hart defeated Lawler by submission but refused to release the Sharpshooter. As a result, the referee reversed the decision and awarded the title of "Undisputed King of the World Wrestling Federation" to Lawler.
The Hart Family (Bret, Owen, Bruce, and Keith) were scheduled to face a team captained by Lawler in an elimination match at Survivor Series. However, Shawn Michaels had to take Lawler's place because Lawler was facing legal troubles. Lawler did not face Bret Hart at another pay-per-view until the first In Your House, when he beat Hart after Hakushi and his manager Shinja interfered. This set up a "Kiss My Foot" match at King of the Ring 1995, which Bret won. As a result, Lawler was forced to kiss Bret's feet. The feud took one final turn when Lawler introduced his "dentist" Isaac Yankem, D.D.S.. After Hart defeated Yankem by disqualification, however, the feud quickly disappeared.
Following the end of his legal troubles which kept him out of Survivor Series 1993, Lawler eventually returned to the WWF at WrestleMania X, which was also the first WWF pay-per-view he ever commentated at. During the main event of the night, "Rowdy" Roddy Piper served as special guest referee for the second WWF championship match. During this Lawler began making disparaging remarks about him. Lawler would continue to berate Piper on later episodes of Monday Night Raw, including bringing a skinny kid into the ring dressed as Piper and forcing him to kiss his feet. This ultimately led to a match between the two at King of the Ring 1994 which Lawler lost.
In the fall of 1994, Lawler initiated a feud with Doink the Clown. Lawler popped the balloons carried by Doink's midget sidekick, Dink. After Doink and Dink retaliated, Lawler introduced a midget sidekick of his own, who he named Queasy. In the following weeks, Doink added two more sidekicks, Wink and Pink, while Lawler introduced Sleazy and Cheesy. This led to an elimination match at Survivor Series 1994, which Lawler's team won. After the match, however, Lawler's team turned on him, joining with Doink's team to attack Lawler.
By 1996, Lawler wrestled occasionally on WWF Superstars where he would take on jobbers while holding a microphone in the ring to, essentially, "do the commentary on (his) very own matches" while occasionally serving as the official cornerman for Isaac Yankem D.D.S. After a brief feud with the Ultimate Warrior, Lawler began feuding with Jake Roberts after making fun of Roberts' drug and alcohol problems. The two met in a match at SummerSlam 1996, which Lawler won. After the match, Lawler poured Jim Beam whiskey down Roberts' throat.
In mid-1997, Lawler entered the King of the Ring tournament for the first time and advanced to the semi-final round where he was defeated by Mankind. By the fall, the WWF introduced a new "light-heavyweight division". Lawler's son, Brian Christopher, was one of the major superstars in the division, although the WWF played up an angle where both Lawler and Christopher would deny their family relationship, even though the two would aide each other in matches and so on.
By 1998, Lawler rarely wrestled in the WWF and focused on commentary. By 1998, Vince McMahon had turned heel in the WWF for the first time and left the announce position, to which Lawler began praising McMahon's name on commentary as part of his own heel persona, much to the chagrin of Jim Ross. It was McMahon's departure from the commentary team which led to the strong on-screen chemistry between Lawler and Ross in subsequent years. This played a key role in a change of Lawler's character; although he still supported the heels, he showed a sense of right and wrong, and would condemn actions of heels when they went too far. This began when Lawler surprisingly attacked Tazz when he started bullying Ross. At SummerSlam, The King wrestled Tazz in defense of Ross.
In February 2001, Lawler left the WWF.
On November 19, 2001, Lawler returned to the WWF. He was reintroduced by Vince McMahon on Raw as the replacement for color commentator (and Alliance member) Paul Heyman, who had been (kayfabe) fired in the aftermath of the Alliance's loss at the previous night's Survivor Series. As he had been before his departure, Lawler once again became color commentator on Raw and pay-per-view events alongside Jim Ross and SmackDown! with Michael Cole, until the brands were separated and Lawler became exclusive to Raw. Lawler stated that his well-worked chemistry with Jim Ross has been a result of their different styles; according to Lawler, Jim Ross is a fine storyteller and keeps fans well-versed with current storylines, whereas he provides reaction and emotion to liven the commentary.
In 2003, Raw's announce team of Lawler and Jim Ross feuded with Sunday Night Heat's team of Jonathan Coachman and Al Snow. At Unforgiven, Lawler and Ross lost a match against Coachman and Snow, thus losing their right to do commentary on Raw. In a rematch, however, Ross defeated Coachman, winning Lawler and Ross their position back.
In June 2006, Extreme Championship Wrestling was re-launched and began a small invasion within WWE again. ECW and WWE went head to head for several weeks on Raw, which spanned to include the SmackDown! superstars. This created tension between the Raw and SmackDown! announce teams, as Tazz, an ECW alumnus, insulted and criticized Jim Ross until Lawler came to Ross' defense, reigniting their feud from 2000. The feud concluded when Tazz and Lawler faced each other in a match at One Night Stand, which Tazz won in only 30 seconds by making Lawler pass out to the Tazzmission after a distraction from Joey Styles, who Lawler had slapped just prior to the match.
In July 2006, Randy Orton began a feud with Hulk Hogan. Lawler attacked Orton in defense of Hogan, which set up a match between them on Raw. Orton defeated Lawler after a low blow and an RKO.
On March 31, 2007, Lawler was inducted into the WWE Hall of Fame by William Shatner, whom Lawler had a memorable altercation with on a January 1995 episode of Raw. In August, King Booker claimed to be the only one entitled to be known as "King". After being beaten by Booker in the ring, Lawler was supposed to be forced to crown his opponent at an August 13 show in Madison Square Garden. During the ceremony, however, Lawler announced another king as a new opponent for Booker, "The King of Kings" Triple H. This led to a worked brawl between Lawler and Booker.
On the July 7, 2008 edition of Raw, Lawler was attacked by Kane after saving Michael Cole from a similar attack, in which Kane repeatedly asked "Is he alive or is he dead?" Later that summer, he teamed with "Hacksaw" Jim Duggan to face Ted DiBiase and Cody Rhodes for the World Tag Team Championship but lost.
On the March 23, 2009 edition of Raw, Lawler challenged Chris Jericho to a match because of his disrespect and erratic behavior to WWE Hall of Famers, which Jericho accepted. The following week, Lawler lost to Jericho after submitting to the Walls of Jericho. After the match, Jericho outlined how he would remain supreme against WWE Hall of Famers at WrestleMania XXV.
On the July 20 episode of Raw, Lawler announced himself as the opponent against The Brian Kendrick. He went on to defeat Kendrick. On the November 16 edition of Raw, after recent acquisition Sheamus attacked the timekeeper in frustration for not receiving an opponent, Lawler left the announce table to confront Sheamus and check on the victim, only to receive a kick to the head for his troubles. On June 7, 2010, during a Viewer's Choice edition of Raw, Lawler lost his crown to the IRS because he had apparently not paid his taxes, but it was regained by Quinton Jackson later on. At the end of the night, Lawler was one of the many employees at ringside that were brutally attacked by the season 1 NXT rookies. Lawler however, was the only person at ringside that fought back, as he used punches and chops to attack the NXT rookies assaulting him until it was a 3-on-1 assault. The following week on Raw, Lawler and the Raw roster fought off the now-called "The Nexus" when they attempted to ambush John Cena a second time. On June 28, Lawler, Ricky Steamboat, Michael Hayes, Arn Anderson, Mike Rotunda, and Dean Malenko were severely attacked by the Nexus, just as they were celebrating Steamboat's career. Josh Mathews replaced Lawler on color commentator for the remainder of the show.
On the July 26, 2010 episode of Raw, Lawler teamed with Mark Henry, Goldust, Yoshi Tatsu, Evan Bourne and The Hart Dynasty in a tag team elimination match versus the Nexus. Lawler was eliminated by Heath Slater.
On the November 29 episode of the King of the Ring special of Raw, Lawler, who was celebrating his 61st birthday, would challenge The Miz for his WWE Championship, to which Miz would decline. Miz's decision would be reversed by the anonymous Raw General Manager, who made the match the main event of the night, making it Lawler's first shot at the title, with the match type being a Tables, Ladders and Chairs match. Miz would retain his title from Lawler after interference by Alex Riley and Michael Cole.
Cole's interference would cause tension between the two. On the December 6 episode of Raw, Cole would first apologize to Lawler, only for him to take it back and demand an apology from Lawler to himself. After Lawler threatened to attack Cole, the anonymous Raw General Manager would then issue a "cease and desist" order, which barred any physicality between them and that if either of them violated the order, that individual would have their contract terminated immediately.
Lawler would then continue his feud with The Miz, where on the December 20 episode of Raw, Lawler would team with Randy Orton and John Morrison to take on Miz, Riley and Sheamus in a 6-man Tag match with Lawler picking up the win by pinning Miz. This would lead to a rematch between Miz and Lawler the following week, with Lawler once again getting the victory, this time by count-out after Morrison got involved. Later on that night, Miz would attack Lawler from behind as Lawler was sitting at the announce table. Lawler would once again team with Orton on the January 10, 2011 episode of Raw to take on Miz and Riley. Lawler was once again successful in getting the victory, this time pinning Riley. On the January 31 episode of Raw, Lawler was placed in a 7-man Raw Rumble match, where the winner would receive a WWE Championship match against The Miz at WWE Elimination Chamber. Lawler would win the match by last eliminating Sheamus. At the pay-per-view, Lawler was unsuccessful in winning the title, ending the feud.
The following night on Raw, Lawler, after having enough of Cole's attitude, which included the mocking of Lawler's mother's recent death, would challenge him to a match at WrestleMania XXVII. Cole would respond by throwing water into Lawler's face, with Lawler chasing Cole off to the backstage area. On the February 28 episode of Raw, Cole would accept Lawler's challenge to a match at WrestleMania and announce that he would be trained in the coming weeks by Jack Swagger for the upcoming match. The following week, Stone Cold Steve Austin was announced as the guest referee for the match. On the March 14 episode of Raw, Lawler was confronted by his son Brian Lawler, who was invited to Raw by Michael Cole, to "expose" his father's character. Brian, in storyline, claimed his dad was never there for him, mentioned that Lawler never mentioned that Brian was his son on commentary, boasted that he competed at WrestleMania before his father, and stated that he was ashamed of him. Brian then slapped Lawler and left. Michael Cole continued to harass Lawler, who still couldn't physically harm him, but was interrupted by a returning Jim Ross. Before JR could attack Cole, Swagger attacked Lawler from behind, and then preceeded to attack and lock in the ankle lock on JR, while Cole harassed him. Lawler tried to stop the attack, but fell victim to the ankle lock as well.
At WrestleMania, Lawler originally won the match by submission, but while he was celebrating his win with Stone Cold, the anonymous Raw General Manager would reverse the decision, due to Stone Cold physically getting involved in the match by pushing Cole, thus, making Cole the winner by disqualification. Lawler would announce on the April 11 episode of Raw that he and Jim Ross will go against Cole and Swagger at Extreme Rules in a Country Whipping match, which they were unsuccessful. Lawler challenged Cole to one last match at Over the Limit, even going as far as to putting his Hall of Fame ring on the line and would personally induct Cole into the Hall of Fame itself. Cole would decline at first, but would be accepted by Swagger later that night. During the contract signing, Cole announced it would be a "Kiss My Foot" match. At the pay-per-view, Lawler defeated Cole. Afterwards, Jim Ross, Eve Torres and Bret Hart helped Lawler by making Cole kiss his foot. Following the pay-per-view, Cole apologized to Lawler, but, continued his antagonistic attitude much to the chagrin of Lawler.
Lawler competed in the 2012 Royal Rumble match as the number 12 entrant, but was eliminated by Cody Rhodes after 43 seconds. He, along with Booker T, eliminated Michael Cole afterwards. On the April 30, 2012 episode of Raw, Lawler competed in a Beat the Clock challenge to determine the number one contender for the WWE Championship match at Over the Limit, but was defeated by Daniel Bryan, who went on to challenge for the title. On the July 9 episode of Raw, Lawler went against Michael Cole in a WrestleMania XXVII rematch, which he quickly won, but the anonymous Raw General Manager, who returned that night as the guest general manager, reversed the decision and Lawler lost to Cole by disqualification following interference by Booker T. Santino Marella came out to reveal that Hornswoggle was the Anonymous Raw General Manager, who was hiding underneath the ring.
On the July 23 episode of WWE Raw 1000, after CM Punk attacked The Rock, Lawler would mention on commentary that "CM Punk has turned his back on the WWE Universe". The following week on Raw, Punk would confront Lawler about what he said before being interrupted by Big Show. On the August 20 episode of Raw, after John Cena wouldn't tell Punk he was the "Best in the World", Punk would ask for Lawler to get in the ring and say it for the WWE Universe. After Lawler refused to say Punk was the "Best in the World" too, Punk would attack Lawler from behind. The next week on Raw, after Lawler demanded an apology from Punk, Punk would challenge Lawler to a match, which Lawler would accept later that night, where Punk would defeat Lawler in a Steel Cage match. Before the September 3 episode of Raw, Punk and Lawler brawled backstage, with Punk getting the upper hand before officials stopped them, Lawler was kicked in the throat, which caused Lawler to miss commentary that night, with The Miz filling in for him.
On September 10, 2012, Lawler collapsed (legit) at the announcers table while Kane and Daniel Bryan competed against The Prime Time Players. Updates were provided during the live broadcast by commentator Michael Cole. At the end of the broadcast at 11:15 p.m. EDT, it was announced that he had received CPR, but was breathing independently and reacting to stimulus. It was later confirmed on WWE.com that Lawler had suffered a heart attack. On September 11, 2012, he underwent an angioplasty to improve blood flow to his heart. On September 12, 2012, Lawler was reported to be slowly being eased off sedation, his ventilator removed. He was able to blink, nod, and squeeze with his hands, and that same day, the results of several CT scans showed no signs of brain damage. By September 17, Lawler had returned to his home in Memphis.
It was announced on the October 29, 2012 episode of Raw that Lawler would return to WWE on November 12, 2012, in which he would continue his rivalry with CM Punk, after Punk interrupted his emotional return. For the following few weeks, Jerry would favor Punk's opponents, continuously hoping that Punk would lose the WWE Championship, which he eventually did to The Rock at the Royal Rumble event, much to Lawler's delight. On January 7th, CM Punk mentioned him as a 'bonehead' in his infamous second 'pipe bomb'.
On the March 17, 2014 episode of Raw, Lawler was blamed by Kane for allowing fans to enter the ring the previous week in Memphis as part of Daniel Bryan's Occupy RAW Movement. He was forced in the ring by The Shield but The Shield instead attacked Kane.
On January 8, 2015, it was announced on WWE.com that Lawler will be a part of the SmackDown broadcast team as a color commentator along with Michael Cole and Byron Saxton starting January 15, ending his 19-year run as a color commentator of Raw as he was replaced by Booker T. On the March 30, 2015 episode of Raw was the night after WrestleMania 31, Lawler made his one night return on Raw commentating with Byron Saxton after Michael Cole, Booker T, and JBL were assaulted by Brock Lesnar they continued the show to filled in for Cole, Booker T, and JBL.