On the latest edition of his Grillin JR podcast the great Jim Ross spoke about his days in WWE, specifically when the company returned to Kemper Arena in 2002, the first time they had been there since Owen Hart’s tragic death at Over The Edge 1999. Ross reveals how difficult that moment was for him and Jerry Lawler, who both felt like they had to relive the incident. Highlights are below.
Recalls WWE running the venue for Backlash 2002, the first time they were there since Owen’s death:
Kemper [Arena] especially. I don’t know why we [WWE] went there. I’m not… because of what happened prior, the Owen [Hart] situation. I mean of all the arenas in America that we could have run, we ran Kemper and I don’t — I never have quite figured that one out but in any event, the crowd [at Backlash 2002] was responsive, it was representative, you know, got over 10,000 folks there, they were pumped up. I remember the crowd being involved.
How hard it was for he and Jerry Lawler because they had to relive the moment:
But I also know that behind those tearful eyes sometimes in the crowd, that they were thinking about the last time they were there for a WWE event and it’s just challenging to get those thoughts out of your — and those images out of your mind… and for [Jerry] Lawler and I, nobody gives a sh*t about us but bottom line is-is that we had to relive it again too and considering I was the one that made the announcement that Owen had died, I carried those with me from all the way when it happened to going back. So, I don’t know. I just… selfishly, I wish we would have done it at another building.
(H/T and transcribed by Post Wrestling)