Jim Ross Explains Why Vince McMahon Didn't Tell Him About Montreal Screwjob

The Montreal Screwjob is one of the most infamous moments in professional wrestling history. At Survivor Series 1997, Bret Hart refused to lose the WWE Championship in his native Canada to rival Shawn Michaels. When Michaels locked in a Sharpshooter during the match, referee Earl Hebner immediately called for the bell despite Hart not tapping out to his own maneuver. The call was made by then-WWE Chairman Vince McMahon, who made the decision because Hart was leaving for WCW following the match.


Former WWE Head of Talent Relations, Jim Ross, who was on commentary for the match, revealed what McMahon's reasoning was for not informing him ahead of time about the screwjob.

"After the show, I was confused, I was upset," Ross said on "Grilling JR." "I said [to Vince], 'Why didn't you tell me?' He said, 'Because I want the talent to always know the truth and that is you didn't have, you were not a party to this deal. This is not your idea. You didn't endorse it. You'll always be loyal to the talent and if you'd have known ... [Ross] could have prevented it.' I couldn't prevent it. It was a done deal."

In the ensuing years, Hart returned to WWE, with his comeback match being against McMahon at WrestleMania 26 nearly 13 years after he was screwed out of the WWE Championship. Hart and Michaels have had their differences over the years but have since let bygones be bygones.


If you use any quotes from this article, please credit "Grilling JR" with a h/t to Wrestling Inc. for the transcription.