The Undertaker Speaks Out About The Montreal Screwjob

During an appearance on Bill Simmons’ podcast, The Undertaker discussed the Montreal Screwjob from Survivor Series 1997 which involved Vince McMahon double-crossing Bret Hart in Bret’s match against Shawn Michaels. Here are the highlights courtesy of…

Trying to intervene in the animosity between Hart and Michaels: “No, see, at that time Bret, you know, so Bret had more tenure than me at that time especially. So there’s certain guys like, you know. Now, I always got along with Bret, but Bret really [was] more kind of a quiet leader. He took the business very seriously, and you know, that’s kind of the way he led. So that part, I had to be kind of careful. Because I didn’t have, you know, I wasn’t there long enough yet to just say ‘Hey man, you guys need to cut the s**t.’ I wouldn’t mind breaking it up, but there I was still — like I said, Bret was more tenured than I was and there’s that whole respect level with me and the guys that come before me.”

Reaction to the Screwjob: “Yeah, it was, ah — I was pissed. I was pissed about the whole thing. Because I felt like, there I possibly could have been used to get what we needed. Like you know, take Shawn out of this, let me do it, and then I’ll do business on the other side. And I think Bret probably would have went for that. I mean, there was such disdain at that time between the two of them. And Bret was was going, you know, Bret was leaving. But I was just kind of, at that point I was like, ‘If you’d just kind of come to me with this too.’ And I mean, it’s his company and he did what he thought what was best, but I was like ‘Dude, I think I could’ve helped this whole thing out. I’m right here, and you know I’m going to do business.’ But it happened, and I was really pissed.”

RAW the next day: “The next day, I don’t know. We were supposed to show up by noon for a TV day and I don’t know, I think I rolled it around 5 the next day. Because I didn’t know — because I was so pissed about the whole thing and the way it went down. I I had to really gather myself because I was — my intentions when I got there was like ‘I’m going off on somebody about this,’ you know. I’m really disappointed in the whole situation, and I don’t wanna put myself — like, I was so angry, I don’t wanna go in there and start. I mean, believe me, Vince and I have had our disagreements … but it was the issues were more centered on what I had going on and not what somebody else was doing.”

Talking to Vince: “But I also look at the big picture. Before I look at my own thing, I look at the big picture of, it’s the cliche. “What’s best for business,’ right? But I was like, ‘Oh man. If I go, I’m going in there raising hell. And I’m not sure I wanna do that.’ So it took me all day long to finally figure out, ‘Okay, you’ve gotta calm down and you’ve gotta hear his side of it. At that point I’d already talked with Bret, and you know, everything had already happened. The fight, everything else, all that had already happened.”

“So I had to figure out, ‘Okay, I need to hear Vince’s side of this, and then give my perspective and at least say, ‘Look, if this kind of shit happens again, you gotta involve me here, because it doesn’t have to go down like this.’ And you know, he agreed and — I guess it all worked out. It just, it was sad. Because I’m really tight with Bret. And Bret could have done some things differently. And Shawn could have done things differently, Vince could have done things differently. It could have been — but then, just like you said. That’s one of the great wrestling stories of that decade. The Montreal Screwjob.”