When Jay Leno retired from ‘The Tonight Show’ in 2009, his predecessor was already set in stone. Conan O’Brien had brilliantly helmed ‘Late Night’ on NBC in the time slot directly after Leno’s iconic gab fest. Unfortunately, things didn’t go as planned.

Conan O’Brien hosted The Tonight Show for a very brief period. Jay Leno was soon back at the helm, where he lasted another four years. Conan went on to blame Jay for sabotaging his big break.

During a chat on Bill Maher’s podcast, Leno denied those allegations. He said that it’s just simply not the way things work. He said Conan tried and things didn’t work out.

“It doesn’t work that way. You try and do the best you can, and it didn’t work.”

Conan O’Brien became a viral hero to comedy lovers after the incident. He went on tour for a while, before landing a show on TBS that ran from late 2010 until last Summer. He never did return to network late-night talk.

While Conan leveraged Jay’s alleged power play to reinvent himself, Leno simply slid right back into his old spot. Many Conan fans were upset at the time. Things ultimately worked out for both comedians.

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Michael Perry

Michael Perry is a news contributor for Ringside News and Thirsty for News. Michael has an M.A. in Communication Technology from Point Park University in his hometown of Pittsburgh, PA.

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