As the old saying goes, there are plenty of us that wish we were a fly on the wall when Bruno Sammartino and Vince McMahon met together prior to the WWE Hall of Fame ceremony. Fortunately for us Bruno is a very honest man and when asked about the meeting was happy to reveal all of the details of their now infamous meeting.
[adinserter name=”366 left”]Getting Bruno Sammartino to agree to go into the WWE Hall of Fame is one thing. Having him sit down and have a chat with Vince McMahon is another. As part of the WWE’s attempt to mend broken fences with Bruno, it was important for Vince and Bruno to get together before the live event. Bruno recently gave details of the meeting and his recollection of the sit down was interesting to say the least.
Bruno was asked about the meeting on a recent edition of The NB Show. Here is what the Living Legend and new member of the Hall of Fame told the show.
“The private meeting that took place was at MSG that evening,” Bruno said. “His son-in-law Triple H and Stephanie came to my dressing room, I had my own dressing room, and they asked me, you know, Vince is waiting in his dressing room down the hall and if I minded going over there. I went. Stephanie opened the door and I went in and she shut the door so Vince and I were alone.
“He was standing toward the back of the room. And as I came in I was waiting for him to make the first move to see what he was going to say before I responded. And actually as I walked in he looked at me and he smiled and said ‘Bruno, welcome home’ just like that. And I said ‘Well Vince I’m glad to be home, but we both know the situation and what brought me back home. I have been very critical of you.’ I told him right to his face, ‘You know I have been very critical of you, but I also will recognize the fact that you have made drastic changes and for that I applaud you. But for all these years, I did not like what happened to the business that I spent 25 years in and the turns it took; drugs, nudity, etc.’ Vince said, ‘Well Bruno, I know you were always very outspoken about what you believed, I hope now you are satisfied of the changes. They are in the past, we want to go forward and we want to do a better and better product. And we are very happy that you are back.’
“He did say this to me which I appreciate, ‘When it was the World Wide Wrestling Federation you were the main reason for this organization to become as big as it did. So we want this to happen and we’re thrilled that it has happened.’ And that was it. So I said, ‘Thank you. As long as things stay that way and keep moving forward with improving the product. At this stage of my life there is not much I can do to contribute, but if there is something, especially with young talent, I’d be willing to do that. As long as the product gets better and better.’ And that was it basically.”
It sounded like Vince did the right thing and gave Bruno his proper due. It wasn’t too long ago where Vince had Bruno taken out of a project on the history of pro wrestling. In talking with Bruno over the years I think that is one of the things that has hurt Bruno most. Bruno is a very humble man but I think it really hurt him that his contributions to the company were never acknowledged the way they recognize other legends like Hulk Hogan, Steve Austin, and The Rock.
[adinserter name=”366 right”]I have talked to Bruno numerous times on and off of my radio show and I have to admit that I was stunned to see the hug that ended the Hall of Fame ceremony. Vince’s track record regarding the treatment of his legends tells me that this is not going to end well. Let’s face it. Vince appears to get some kind of enjoyment out of bringing his legends back to humiliate them or portray them as goofy old men. I can guarantee you that Bruno won’t take part in anything like that so if that kind of script gets in Bruno’s hands, this relationship could be trouble.
Bruno isn’t planning to go anywhere. There are plans to bring him into video games as well as use him for sporadic appearances. In other words he has moved back into his old home.
[amazon_link id=”1440476985″ target=”_blank” container=”” container_class=”” ]Bruno Sammartino: An Autobiography Of Wrestling’s Living Legend[/amazon_link]