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By Michael LeBlanc on 9/18/2017 8:33 AM

The Wringer Review (Retro Version) - A Tribute to Bobby Heenan

Greetings, Wrestling fans, on a most solemn day. Bobby “The Brain” Heenan passed
away today at the age of 72. It is not overstatement if you call him the greatest wrestling
manager of all time, as I do. His quick wit, humor, and ability to get any kind of heat he
wanted all contributed to his enormous success. He even transitioned to the broadcast
booth, and didn’t lose a step in the process.

In April of 2004, I was writing a column for called “In the Wringer”,
which eventually became “The Wringer Review”. I was lucky enough to interview
Heenan at one of his book signings in California. I had asked the store’s owner (and
thus, Heenan) for five minutes. He ended up giving me close to fifteen. He was
charming, funny and seemed genuinely glad to speak with me. I have had precious few
“celebrity encounters” in my life, but this was undoubtedly the one I treasure the most.
So here is the article I wrote based on my experience, in its entirety. Enjoy.

An Interview with Bobby “The Brain” Heenan – April 13, 2004

RVD’s 5 Star Comics hosted a book signing last night for Bobby Heenan’s newest
literary foray, “Chairshots and Other Obstacles: Winning Life’s Wrestling Matches”.
The signing was moderately attended, garnering approximately 60-75 people, and I
chatted with several of them next to me in line. I also talked at length with Proud Elite
Member Robert Torres, who came all the way from Ontario for the signing. Thanks for
the kind words, Robert!

Bobby signed books and took pictures with fans, and was very gracious throughout the
event. I had an opportunity to sit down with Bobby after the signing, and herewith is my
interview with the legend known as “The Brain”, among other things!

ML: First off, how are you feeling these days?
BH: Great. Just great.

ML: Clean bill of health?
BH: There’s still a bit of hardness in my throat, from the chemotherapy, but other than
that, I’m great. You can never be totally sure, but the doctor’s tell me I’m clean.

ML: You and Gorilla Monsoon are considered by many as the greatest wrestling
broadcast team of all time. What was it that made you two such a great team?
BH: We liked each other.

ML: Is that rare?
BH: Yeah, it can be. We never competed against each other, or tried to outdo one

ML: In your Hall of Fame speech, you seemed to treat the award with great respect, and
seriousness. Do you think respect is missing from the business today?
BH: I think there’s a dignity missing, definitely.

ML: Have you seen any of the WWE product lately?
BH: Sometimes I see it, but usually I’m watching O’Reilly or ESPN. There’s definitely
a market for it. It’s not what I grew up on, but there’s a definite market for it.

ML: When you do watch, is there anyone who looks to be an up-and- coming star, in
your opinion?
BH: Orton…and Mae Young.

ML: What prompted a second book?
BH: Cash. There were too many stories. As a heel, I could never go out and meet
people. I enjoy it (writing).

ML: Why make the second book a “self-help” book?
BH: The money I made (in wrestling) did a lot for me. I was able to bury my mother
and put my kids through college. I wanted to give something back. And it sounded right
– it was Steve Anderson’s idea.

ML: Will there be a third book?
BH: Yes. And maybe a fourth one.

ML: Mr. Heenan, it’s been an honor and a privilege.
BH: Bobby.

ML: Bobby, thank you so much.