Kurt Angle Recalls Telling Vince McMahon He Was Going To Accidentally Kill Himself If He Didn't Leave WWE In 2006
Angle has spoken about the meeting for the first time
Kurt Angle has opened up for the first time about the meeting he had with Vince McMahon that ultimately led to his release from WWE in 2006.
Angle has spoken extensively about his addiction to pain killers and the anger he felt towards WWE Chairman McMahon and the promotion towards the end of his first run. The Olympic Gold Medallist, just a few short weeks after being moved to the WWE ECW as the brand's new frontman, was released by the company.
The 52-year-old has recalled his last few days with WWE in 2006 before but, for the first time ever, has now spoken about the details from his meeting with McMahon that led to his departure.
Speaking on the most recent edition of the Kurt Angle Show, he said: "I went to a production meeting and Vince is up front with some of the writers. The producers were all leaving. I walk in and look at Vince, and I pull my pants down to my knees. I said ‘this is what happened last night and my whole crotch is black – my hamstring, front of my leg, abdominal, everything was black. He’s like I guess you’re not gonna wrestle in the triple threat ladder match tonight. I said, ‘No, Vince, we need to talk.’ He said ‘let’s go talk right now' and I said ‘no, I need to come up to headquarters this week.’
"He set it up, not a problem. So, later on that week, I flew up to Stamford, and I’ve never told this story publicly – this is the first time ever. I went to Vince’s office, and I was with my manager. In the office were Shane McMahon, John Laurinaitis, and Vince. They were sitting at a table. I walk in and Vince tells us to sit down. I look in front of me, and there were seven pages of typed text messages and voicemails that I left Vince and people in the office.
"I was like, ‘What the hell are these?’ I’m reading them, and they say ‘Vince, I’m gonna kick your ass when I see you,’ ‘Vince, if you don’t call me back, I’m gonna beat the shit out of you,’ all these threats. I’m like, I don’t remember doing this. Then I remembered the painkillers. I never wrestled high, not once, and I always took what I was supposed to. One painkiller every four to six hours. But when the show was over, that’s when the addict Kurt Angle came in and I’d throw down 20 to 25 pills at a time. I wouldn’t even know what I was doing.
"I was letting out my frustrations when I was texting Vince because Vince was distancing himself from me at this particular time. My behaviour was erratic, I was getting injured, I was pushing him to get the title, and I was pushing to get on pay-per-views to get paid. There were a lot of things going on."
As Angle re-read the message, McMahon was preparing for a fight with the Olympic Gold Medallist. Angle recalls that, at this point, he had to leave the room before telling his boss he was genuinely worried he was going to accidentally kill himself if he didn't leave WWE.
Angle continued: "I’m reading the text messages, and as I’m doing it, Vince says, ‘You want to beat my ass?’ He stands up and takes his jacket off and says ‘let’s fight right now.’ I’m like, holy shit, my boss, the man I look up to as a father figure, wants to beat my ass. I look around the room and Shane is halfway out of his seat because if I get up, Shane is gonna jump me. Vince is a badass and didn’t need Shane to get involved. I’m like this isn’t gonna turn out very well, and I didn’t want to fight Vince.
"I was just angry at myself and angry at the company. I leave the room and go outside and start crying. I don’t know what to do. The company wouldn’t release me up to this point. They wanted to keep me and wanted me to go to rehab and take a break and come back. I come back in and said to Vince, ‘I can’t do this anymore.’ I was crying.
"I said, if you don’t release me, I think I’m gonna kill myself. I didn’t mean I was gonna commit suicide, I meant I was accidentally gonna kill myself – OD on painkillers, wrestle myself to death, I didn’t know. I had to get out. Vince looks at me and says, ‘You’re released. Take a break, go to rehab, come back, and we’ll have a contract waiting for you. Just take your time.’ I appreciated that and was very grateful.
"The thing is, I didn’t talk to him for 11 years. When I came back in 2017, the first thing he said to me was, ‘Kurt, you were a real pain in the ass.’ I really was. I was so hard to deal with and I couldn’t do anything but apologize to him 100 times. I knew I was wrong. We made amends and the rest was history. I have a great relationship with him now. But this is the first time I’ve told that story, and it was really difficult to tell because I’ve never told anybody that before."