Booker T Apologizes to Billy Graham
On his latest Hall of Fame show, Booker T responded to the latest comments by Billy Graham over Kofi Kingston being WWE Champion. Graham, who kicked off the whole kerfuffle when he said Kingston should use steroids to bulk up, took exception to Booker’s defense of Kingston in which Booker brought up Graham’s health problems.
That led to Graham speaking with The Hannibal TV and taking issue with Booker’s comments. Graham made a distinction between steroids and recreational drugs and chided Booker for bringing up his past, saying, “You don’t know what I’ve had really and why I had these illnesses since you’ve not seen the records from the Mayo Clinic hospital.” Graham went on to say that he wasn’t asking for an apology, but that Booker shouldn’t talk about his health when he doesn’t have access to his health records.
Highlights from Booker’s latest round of comments is below:
On whether he owes Graham an apology: “Well you know what? Do I owe Superstar Billy Graham an apology for bringing that stuff up? I say yeah, I do owe Billy Graham an apology for bringing up his ailments and what-not. And I apologize for it. You know, but Billy Graham, he has some apologizing he needs to do as well. Because this whole steroid thing, and me not knowing what [is] on his record at the Mayo Clinic and what-not. I don’t know. I don’t know what’s on this record. But the allegations, he said, ‘I’m sure this guy here used steroids and nobody cared. I’m sure this guy here used steroids and nobody cared.’ How does he know what these guys are doing with their bodies? Did he actually see it? Did he talk to their doctors and their doctors told him? So you know, I think it goes both ways. Last guy I knew that went out there and talked about this guy doing this, and this guy doing that [was] Jose Canseco. And that’s these guys’ business, is if they’re doing something, that’s something that they’ve gotta deal with, with their maker at the end of the day. That has nothing to do with anybody. And he actually said that I probably used it as well. And my thing is this. If I did, that’s my business, and that’s something I should keep to myself and shouldn’t try to put it or force it on anyone else.”
On Graham differentiating between steroids and “drugs”: “My thing is this. He says that maybe he doesn’t look at steroids like a drug. Maybe he doesn’t think it contributed to a lot of the guys that we lost along the way. But you know, I think it does. Maybe that’s just me. I think enlarged hearts, hardened arteries, I think a lot of things happen because of steroid use.”
On the responsibility that older talent have toward younger stars: “I say we as the founders, we as the carpenters who have laid the foundation for this business. I think it’s our job and our duty to build these young guys up as much as we possibly can. And I’m never gonna be one of these old guys that’s living in the past, and living off of what I did, saying ‘Man, this is what I did, and this is what” — I’m never gonna be one of those guys. It’s all about these young guys coming up right now, that are out there putting the work in, that’s gotta do all of these tours back to back to back to back. I see it on a regular basis, and I’ve watched Kofi do it for eleven years.”
On Kofi’s response to Graham’s comments: “If he ain’t gonna say nothing, Kofi Kingston, I understand it because he’s got respect and he’s a guy that’s on the roster. But I feel like it’s my duty to say something about something like this. Because I have been in that position once upon a time, wondering what the people are gonna think when I finally and hopefully win the World Championship. Hopefully they’ll be proud. Hopefully, they’ll say ‘Hey man, big ups. You deserve it. Hopefully I won’t have to wake up the next day reading some clips of people saying this. I’m so glad I didn’t have social media when I did win the World Championship because I probably would have heard it too. But much love to Superstar Billy Graham. I love you man, but I just want you to know that there’s no place in this business for that kind of talk in 2019. Thank you very much.”