Source: The Steve Austin Show
Vince Russo was the latest guest on Steve Austin's "The Steve Austin Show," and one of the topics they discussed in length was the Montreal Screwjob, which happened at WWE Survivor Series 1997 involving Bret Hart and Shawn Michaels. Listen to it here.
The former WWE writer spoke about his thoughts on the issue, and shed some light on what went down that fateful week.
Russo said they discussed numerous endings with Hart before the main event contest, and after they couldn't find an alternative, Vince McMahon pulled Russo aside, and told him he was going to call Hart since he needed Russo to be a third party on the telephone.
The controversial character proclaimed his love for Hart, but did confirm he was on the phone and said Hart refused everything, including trying to work in Jim Neidhart to help with the finish.
Russo then said he told McMahon to let Michaels put Hart in his own move, The Sharpshooter, and call for the bell. Russo stated it was late at night on the Thursday before, and they simply couldn't find any alternatives.
"Vince didn't say a word," confessed Russo.
The next day, Russo didn't hear anything from McMahon, and he didn't even talk to him at the pay-per-view. Russo had no idea what was going to happen, while he watched the match next to The Undertaker.
"All of a sudden I'm watching, and I see that finish go down," Russo said. "Taker was going to kill somebody. If he had known, I would not be here today."
Russo explained that Owen Hart was still on the roster, and that less than a week later, the younger Hart brother called him crying.
"Vince, you have to talk to Bret," Owen told him. "Bret says if I stay with the WWE, he's going to disown me as a brother…he (doesn't) want anything to do with me. Please, you've got to talk to him."
On the other side of the phone, Russo told Owen he should be calling McMahon about his issue, but Owen stated that he couldn't get a hold of him. Russo also said McMahon would have fired him for talking to Bret. Russo then stated less than a week after that, he called Bret on the phone.
Russo said he wanted to kill everybody, and told Bret at the end of the day, McMahon was looking to protect his entire company. He told Bret it had nothing to do with McMahon not trusting Bret, but more so Eric Bischoff.
He didn't want the WCW boss to parade his WWE title on his program, much like Bischoff did with Madusa when she joined WCW and put the WWE Women's Championship in the trash.
Russo then told Bret he stood behind Vince for what he did, despite Hart probably wanting to rip his head off when he heard that statement.
Russo said Vince simply had no choice.
Austin then said it was shocking for him to see at the time, and that Bret was still a close friend to this day, not to mention one of his favorite guys to work with. Austin also stated he agreed with the decision, as far as protecting the business and the company Vince McMahon Sr. had started. He was on board with the decision, but said he was in complete shock and that everyone was completely confused.
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