Nancy Grace's past coverage of wrestling deaths caught up with her during an appearance on The Jim & Sam Show on Tuesday, which culminated with Grace walking out of the interview.
The now-former HLN host appeared on the show, ostensibly to promote her new television show and book, but during the interview hosts Jim Norton and Sam Roberts brought up Grace's past coverage of wrestling deaths--specifically, her interview with Diamond Dallas Page following the death of Ultimate Warrior.
Roberts, a longtime wrestling fan, initiated what proved to be a heated exchange:
Roberts: You took a lot of heat too, for the report you did when The Ultimate Warrior died and you brought on DDP the wrestler, and you were talking about wrestlers dying of steroids and drug overdoses, things like that. When steroids weren't involved in The Ultimate Warrior's death...
Grace: No they were not.
Roberts: And on the people you listed, you listed a whole bunch of wrestlers that had died before they were 40. Some of the wrestlers you listed, one of them had fallen from the ceiling, one of them had been shot, there were all these guys, all these names...
Grace: I don't think it was ever said that those guys died from steroid overdose.
Roberts: No, but you said that there's...
Grace: Early deaths and untimely deaths in wrestling history.
Roberts: But you established the argument that there's drug abuse and steroids, then you said... here's a list of wrestlers that died young. So you didn't say that's why they died...
Grace: I really believe that professional wrestlers are not protected. I think everybody gets a big kick out of watching them and whether the wrestling is real or not, people love watching it. I think that those wrestlers, those women and men that go in the ring are not protected. I don't think anybody is ever looking out for them and I think that they are used badly.
Roberts: So if that was your intention and of course I can believe you on that, you're telling me that, what goes through your mind when a lot of wrestlers see your report and come back at you with venom, saying you're not representing us, you're not telling our story and what you're portraying isn't happening.
Grace: Then I'm sorry they feel that way.
Roberts: That's the way most wrestlers responded. The wrestlers that were on your show, Diamond Dallas Page, who was on your show, was furious. I don't know if you remember, about coming on your show. He said he came on under false pretenses.
Grace: I do remember. I thought he was a perfect gentleman, he could not have been nicer. And I don't want him to feel bad. I feel bad that he feels bad. But the fact remains, in the wrestling industry there is a very high occurrence of untimely deaths for a lot of different reasons. I feel it's the industry's fault. I don't think these guys and women, but mostly guys are the ones dying inordinately young, I don't think that they are told all the risks of what they're getting into.
Roberts: So when the people you advocate for when you're saying this, this is your intention to advocate for these people. When the people you're advocating for come to you and say, "we don't need you doing that for us, we don't like what you're doing, don't do it."
Grace: I've rarely had that happen.
Roberts: It happened in this case.
Grace: Yes it did, with that wrestler. He did not like the way the show went.
Roberts: And most wrestlers that watched that...
Grace: I disagree with you.
Roberts: I talk to wrestlers all the time...
Grace: I know you talk to wrestlers all the time and you have talked to several wrestlers that said that but that does not mean most wrestlers.
Roberts: A huge amount.
Grace: So, the fact that you have talked to some wrestlers that said that, I hear you, I respect that and I am sorry they feel that way. I really don't know what else you want me to say.
Grace later said, "I'm sorry the wrestlers feel that way but the truth is that a huge amount of wrestlers die at a young age, for a lot of different reasons, and that is what that screen was for. Now if you or somebody else interpreted it a different way, I feel bad about that."
After accusing the hosts of attacking her, she later walked out of the interview.
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