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Jim Ross Discusses The Infamous Dr. Heiney Segment
Posted By: Ben Kerin on May 03, 2020
Jim Ross was recently interviewed on the latest 'Talk Is Jericho' podcast in which he discussed Vince McMahon and the infamous Dr. Heiney segment which J.R. revealed upset his late wife Jan Ross.
On how he has covered Vince McMahon in his new book:
"He’s a different breed of cat. And look, people have thought that, ‘Boy, JR’s gonna really — he’s out of WWE, he’s with AEW now, he doesn’t have to cross that bridge anymore.’ Well, I’m not a bridge burner. I’m not gonna do that. And the thing about it is, for both of us [him and Jericho]. We have so much in common on this topic, that he made us both a lot of money. And that’s kind of what we got — I got in the business to be in the wrestling business, not knowing what rewards may lie ahead because I was never going to be a wrestler. How could I earn a good living, a significant living, in another facet of our business? And I found a few things that I thought I was decent at, and I wanted to capitalize at those things. So, he was a — he’s just an interesting guy, man. It wasn’t a hatchet job, I’m glad that you saw the balance. It was a balance there. I put him over as much as I said, ‘Well, here we did this, I didn’t like it but I understand why they did it, but it didn’t suit me well."
On his health during the Dr. Heiney segment:
"The Dr. Heiney thing was a sticking point for me because — look, I didn’t see Dr. Heiney when it aired live because I was on a morphine drip getting out of ICU that morning … I’d been sick, and I didn’t want to admit illness. I didn’t want to admit it because — or pain, or discomfort, because I didn’t want to be perceived as weak. And we both know in the wrestling business, weak personalities, weak character gets gobbled right up. And so I didn’t wanna be perceived as a weak guy … I was insecure, all this other stuff, sick, you know, losing my spot. All the regular wrestling cliches.
"So I’m sitting at home, I was in intensive care for nine days. I had a perforated colon, and I was poisoning myself. I was about 30 days away from dying. But these stomach aches man, I mean, I was drinking Pepto Bismol and all these things, these little homemade remedies like it was water. But the pain would never go away. And then I started doing too many opiates, and masked my pain and all of this other crap."
On his wife Jan’s reaction to the segment:
"So they do a thing — Vince calls me on Monday morning. Jan answered the phone and she says, ‘It’s Vince.’ I said, ‘Okay.’ So he’s in LA getting ready to do Raw later that day. He said, ‘Hey pal, uh hope you’re feeling better. I got a little something for you on the show tonight, you’re really gonna like. Hope you watch.’ That was about it. So I was drugged, you know, legally and by the doctor’s orders for this stuff I’m enduring. So I said, ‘Okay, thanks,’ whatever it was. You know, I was buzzed. So I end up falling asleep later in the day and I didn’t watch the show.
“So then I wake up to Jan crying. And I’m thinking, ‘What the hell has happened while I was asleep?’ She had older parents, it could have a death, or tragedy, I didn’t know. So I said, ‘Honey, what’s wrong?’ She said, ‘You didn’t see what Vince did, did you?’ I said, ‘No, I slept right through the whole show.’ So she says, ‘Why does he do these things?’ And I said, ‘I don’t — what did he do?’ So she told me. We rewinded the DVR."
On why he didn't like the segment:
"And I never understood that punchline [in the segment], I never understood the creative. I’m not sure who all wrote that. I think Brian Gewirtz was involved. I’m not mad at anybody about it. He was — Brian was doing what he said, that he’s supposed to do. He’s a talented guy. It’s just a — I thought a waste of time. And I thought it was a little, it borderlined on too personal. It wasn’t business, and it wasn’t funny. So what did we do it? And it made my wife cry, so it pissed me off."
On why he thinks the segment was done:
"God, who knows? You know, you probably had as good an assumption as I do. I don’t know why he did it. He thought it was entertaining. Everything — it’s like ribbing on the square in wrestling. You know, wrestlers are famous about not wanting to face up to the truth sometimes, and make everything convenient for them. And they’re ribbing on the square becomes, ‘I forgot’ so they say this, this, this. Then someone will say — it’s like a woman. Insulting a woman or coming onto her. ‘Hey honey, I’m just teasing. Come on. You can’t believe I’m serious about that, can you?’ Well, yeah. I can. So that’s kind of what it was. I never did understand it. He thought it was entertaining, and that scared me because it wasn’t."
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