Vader Talks Montreal Screwjob, Foley’s Ear, Orndorff, & More

WWE & WCW legend Big Van Vader was recently interviewed by GoProWrestling. Lots of topics were covered in the 1 hour interview. You can check out some highlights below as well as the entire interview.

Vader on his health status currently:

“I simply believe in my heart that I’m not gonna die. I’m sitting here and I feel good. I got up at 6am this morning. I had quick workout and went to the airport for a 10 o’clock flight and l am here. And I feel fine. I really do. I did receive the bad news from three different heart specialists. Because of the way I’ve lived my life, and they (doctors) asked me if I drink and I haven’t drank in 15 years so it surprised me that it would be one of the causes. I originally reported it was because of football and my wrestling career but that was not the whole story.

On working with Sting:

“The thing about Steve [Borden], he was easy. We didn’t have to talk. We just go out and tear the house down. Every time and it was that easy. We were probably closer in terms of being on the same wave link. We really communicated well in that regard. Definitely one of my favorites.”

On Mick Foley’s ear tearing off during his match in Germany:

“I remember when he hung himself in the ropes and it initially was torn. I had thought all these years that I had done it. I was getting the credit for it. I was watching some footage of it at WWE film room with Mick and he did tear his ear in the ropes. It was later in the match when I got my hand in and I pulled it away from the ear and it flies up. So I think the final tear was from me.”

When Ken Shamrock broke script during a WWE match:

“You see, I had given him too much credit as a worker and I actually wanted to get down to his level so he could punch me in the face to make those shots look good. So I gave myself to him. And it was intentional but that is part of the deal. And I gave them that big shot to the head as a receipt. I hit him as hard as I could. I don’t think it phased him but it look like it did. I clocked him pretty good.”

Vader on the infamous backstage fight with Paul Orndorff that led to his WCW departure:

“He (Orndorff) still talks about it and does interviews and it’s complete adulterated bulls***! The whole story was I had woke up that morning to a phone call from Eric Bischoff. He says, “Leon you promised me a photo shoot for weeks. He says you do it today or I’m going to fire you.” And he was serious. So I said OK when do you want me there. Later I told Eric to make sure to call over there and let them know I am going to be late. Because if you don’t, you’ll catch hell. And sure enough he didn’t call and I often wonder if that was planned. So I walk in there and Paul approached me and says why the fuck are you late? And I said what a minute Paul and I was trying to explain. And as far as I was concerned Dusty and Eric were my two bosses that I had. And Paul starts barking at me for being late and saying who the f*** did I think I was and I said a few choice words to him and we separated. So he’s in my face and he is hollering, spitting and saying he’s going to beat me up and he’s going to break my back. And it wasn’t idle threat she was threatening me so I slap the shit out of him. He was out cold and if I wanted to I could’ve jumped on him or sat on him. Paul was crippled. He couldn’t fight. He was 210lbs. I was 400 lbs. I was bench pressing 550 lbs. I could have murdered him. When I slapped him, his head just misses the steel toolbox and I freaked. I lost a great job for a ton of money and that’s the sad part about it because I was responsible as anyone in WCW in that era with Sting, Foley, Rick Rude, and Sid Vicious before Hogan came along.”

On Warning Bret Hart Before the “Montreal Screwjob”

“I told Bret straight out don’t get yourself in a near full because if they have something planned, that’s what will happen. The ref will count three. He said no Leon I trust (Earl) Hebner and I’ve talked to Shawn. I said you’re wrong – you’re crazy. I said you think the businessman that Vince McMahon is he’s going to allow you to go to WCW with his belt as World champion? I said Bret you’re not that important. Nobody is that important but somehow he thought he was going to walk out of that ring world champion and go to WCW. How many employees does Vince feed? He fed me! I didn’t want Bret to take that belt down there.”

William B. West

William B. West

William B. West has been an internet journalist since 1998. William is editor of, admin of, as well as writer & editor in chief of,, and

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