On Saturday, January 19, 2008, Greg Kovacs collapsed while training at a Bally's Fitness Centre in Mississauga, Ontario, Canada. You will, no doubt, read about this in muscle magazines- but let me tell you what really happened. Please, no "He had it coming.." -or other such callous, cruel input. Kovacs pushed gettiing huge to the limit- to the very end- or, I pray, no further than Death's doorstep.
I was there. In the gym. The following true story is upsetting for me to recount, but someone has to tell what happened before all the gossip and lies run amok!
I was training at Bally's on a ridiculously expensive day pass, along with my training partner and family chauffeur, Nobby. I came over from England some weeks back to start up a gym of my own, but was out to see what innovations the competition were coming out with.
We had just taken a rest after having both completed forced-rep cheat barbell curls, 285 fo 5 reps, when I noticed none other than Greg Kovacs doing military presses! Kovacs has always been one of my favourite bodybuilders, and one of the most underappreciated of all time!
But something drew my immediate disgust. This wasnt the Kovacs I had envisaged, a monster handling hundreds of pounds in every lift- in fact, he wasnt even screaming, or so much as grunting loudly, as he pushed 225 for reps in behind-the neck presses. Who was spotting him? None other than a WOMAN, for God's sake! Nobby and I lumbered over to the bench he was using, and waited for him to rack the weight. I glared at the woman standing behind the bench and snarled "Get the **** out of here, Jezebel!". "I-I'm his wife...who the hell.." she stammered. "NOW, You INFIDEL!!", I screamed, and smacked her hard across the face, sending her to the ground. Nobby's steel-toed drill boot came crashing into her ribs, sending her flying a safe distance away. No more meddling- Greg wouldn't have his workouts watered-down and his Iron Warrior spirit softened by some wench while I was around- no, BY GOD!
Nobby and I quickly added a 45 pound and a 25 pound plate to each side, while Greg seemed to look around with a stunned expression. "ROIGHT MATE- BUSINESS, AS USUAL!!" Nobby roared, and didnt give Greg so much a lift-off as dropped the bar into his hands- it was lift, or die! "C'mon KOVACS...ALL THE WAY DOWN..!!" I screamed, as Greg seemed to be fighting to keep the bar from not descending down to the back of his shoulders. "L-l-l-look, guys.." he sputtered, but there was no way out. His face turning a crimson red, he struggled, screaming, to lift the bar, or perhaps escape, who knows- while Nobby and I screamed words of encouragement! Shaking, sweating, he managed to raise the 365 pounds, and no sooner had Nobby grabbed the bar and racked it than Kovacs simply collapsed, like a bag of rags, to the floor! He wasn't moving.
"By GOD- now that is the Kovacs I REMEMBER!!" I snarled. "Fookin roight, mate!" Nobby agreed. Gym management came running over, and someone screamed "CALL 9-1-1!!". Nobby and I slowly backed away from the scene, then decided it was best to vacate the premises- after all, Greg's wife had been assaulted and there were witnesses- and a police car had pulled up to the front of the gym. We quickly made our way to a rear fire escape exit, made it out the back, and fled, laughing!
Kovacs is on life support at Toronto General Hospital as I write this. Say a prayer for him, bros!