Bob Costas has responded to Vince McMahon.
McMahon and Costas were interviewed in Jim Miller’s new book “Tinderbox: HBO’s Ruthless Pursuit of New Frontiers" regarding their confrontational segment in 2001 where McMahon took exception to Costas' line of questioning.
In the book, McMahon said, "Once we were doing the interview, he kept interrupting me and interrupting me, and bringing up topics that had nothing to do with what we were supposed to be talking about. He kept trying to do the ‘I gotcha’ kind of thing. It was clear he didn’t want to hear any of my answers. The other problem was that Bob is so freaking pompous. The entire time he acted like he was above me and was just using me to show how great he was. I was sitting there really pissed off and started thinking, I wish he wasn’t 5-feet high and 140 pounds. If he was 6-5 and 295, he would deserve to get the s–t beat out of him. I could have really given them some great television.”
Speaking on STWeekly, Costas responded to McMahon's comments.
He began by saying that McMahon has made those comments in the past, but they were circulating once again due to the release of the book.
Directly addressing McMahon's comments about wanting to kick the shit out of him if he were bigger, Costas said, "Here's my answer to this. Let's test Vince's premise. He probably outweighed my two to one. I weighed around 150. He might've weighed, especially then, certainly 275 minimum, maybe 300 pounds. Who knows what might have enhanced that physical standing. In any case, his premise is, 'if Bob and I were closer in size, his line of questioning was ticking me off and we would've come to blows and I would have beat the crap out of him. Let's test this premise. Let's suppose somebody is on Meet The Press and they don't like Chuck Todd's line of questioning. They are a congressman or senator, and like Chuck, they are roughly 5'10'' to six feet tall and weigh between 175 and 185. They are in the same weight class. It would be entirely appropriate for the senator from whatever state to just go to blows. Think about that. Think about this premise. 'I don't like your line of questioning, but as long as it's a fair fight, I should be allowed to kick the shit out of you.' Brilliant. Do you really have to respond to something that stupid? On its base, it's idiotic.
"What really ticked him off was this...it's obvious he was getting angry. It was great TV and people are still talking about it. I didn't expect it to go this way, but when it did and he went off, it didn't throw me off. He's not dumb. If you look at a transcript of this, it might've been a draw. On tone, he's losing his shit and I'm like, 'Okay, let's proceed.' If this was supposed to throw me off, it didn't work."
In the book, Costas noted that Vince called him the following day and proposed an interview rematch. The two would have another interview the following year, but it wasn't as memorable.
Fans can order Tinderbox: HBO’s Ruthless Pursuit of New Frontiers by clicking here.
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