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Jim Ross Talks About the Vince McMahon No Sneezing Rule, Why He Missed the Curtain Call at MSG

May 9, 2019 | Posted by Jeffrey Harris
Vince McMahon WWE

– In an interview with Conrad Thompson for the Grilling JR podcast, Jim Ross spoke about the infamous curtain call incident that took place on May 16, 1996 at the Madison Square Garden. Ironically, Jim Ross normally went to every MSG show at the time, but he wasn’t there that night because he had the flu. As JR and others have said in the past, Vince McMahon hates sneezing, so having the flu got him out of going to the show where the incident took place. Below are some highlights.

Jim Ross on not being at the Garden the night of the Curtain Call incident: “When I went to work for Vince [McMahon] in ’93, soon thereafter, he wanted me to — I started booking the cards, the matches at the live events. And one time, he called me and said, ‘JR meet me at the office,’ or ‘Meet me at home,’or someplace like that, and ‘Will you ride to the Garden with me?’ I didn’t even know I was going to the Garden. So I said, ‘You want me to go to the Garden? That’ll be good.’ He said, ‘Why wouldn’t you want to go?’ That told me all I needed to know right there that I needed to go to every Garden show, and it was the right thing to do quite frankly. I was just being lazy. You work 8-10 hours a day, and you go to work another several hours at an event and it makes for a long ass day. But to my luck, if you want to call it luck, that day I had the flu. I had the flu pretty much all week, hacking and coughing and sneezing. Anybody who knows the legends of the great Vince McMahon, you know that he’s not a hacker or a cougher or a sneezing person. He don’t do it, and he don’t want to be around it. I’ve seen him curse himself violently when he sneezed. If some new guy came to a meeting and they sneezed, everybody didn’t look at the guy, they looked at Vince to see what he was going to do because they knew he didn’t approve of sneezing.”

JR of how the flu got him out of it because of Vince McMahon’s no sneezing rule: “So, the sneezing rule got me going out of the Garden on that particular night. Ironically, even though I got a wealth of BS on this thing, information and so forth, I did not go to the Garden that night, and I was not present for the Curtain Call. But subsequently, after that event, I felt like I was there and should’ve been there in hindsight based on what happened. So, it was a strange day. It was a good house. The card was strong. The talent was over and unlike a lot of the roster currently, our roster actually sold out the Garden a few times. In any event. I wasn’t there, but boy howdy, do I still have memories of it.”

If you’re using quotes from this interview, please credit Grilling JR with an h/t to 411mania.com.