On the September 10th, 2012 edition of WWE Monday Night Raw, Jerry “The King” Lawler suffered a heart attack while doing commentary during the Kane & Daniel Bryan vs The Prime Time Players. Lawler had competed earlier in the night in a tag team match with Randy Orton against Dolph Ziggler and The Miz, it is not known if that had anything to do with Lawler’s collapse. According to Smith Hart (the brother of WWE Hall of Famer Bret Hart), he tweeted this shortly after Raw went off the air.
“According to my friend Jeremy Prophet who was backstage at RAW, Jerry was clinically dead for 20 min before being brought back by defibrilat.”
Hart also noted that ““it has been confirmed that Jerry did suffer a heart attack.” Since medical personnel were at ringside, Lawler was able to receive immediate treatment.”
The incident brought back some tragic memories when it comes to the wrestling world. May 19th, 1999, Owen Hart suffered a fatal fall at Kemper Arena, in Kansas City Missouri. While that incident was not aired on the Pay-Per-View, Over The Edge, it created quite a stir for those watching at home, and especially in the building. I was at this particular event and saw first hand what happened to Owen Hart.
Owen Hart fell approximately eighty feet from the rafters of Kemper Arena. He was scheduled to take on the Godfather for the WWE Intercontinental Championship. Hart was supposed to make a “super-hero” type entrance, primarily for comedic purposes. As Hart was waiting to descend from the rafters, something triggered his harness and sent him falling to his death. Some say that Hart died on impact. However, when Hart landed he hit the ropes near the turnbuckle and fell straight back. A second later, Hart appeared to try to get up. I can only describe this as someone who is trying to do one final sit-up but can’t quite make it. Owen fell back, and never re-gained consciousness. Paramedics came rushing down to the scene almost immediately and tried to revive him, including giving him CPR. Hart was placed on a stretcher and taken from the arena to the local hospital. Being at this event, no one had any idea what had occurred, and even wondered if this was all part of the show. The WWE never told the crowd at Kemper Arena that Owen had died. It was told to the Pay-Per-View audience by Jim Ross.
As I was watching Raw on Monday night, I had the same feeling I did when Owen Hart died. Memories were brought back to that tragic night on May, 19th. 1999. After WWE commentator Michael Cole explained to the television audience that Lawler was given CPR, I did not think that the King would pull through. I found myself glued to the television not even paying any attention to the show itself.
Lawler is currently in Fair condition in a Montreal hospital. He is expected to make a full recovery, and tests show that there was no brain damage sustained. It is not known at this time if and when Jerry Lawler will return to the broadcast table on Raw.
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