Jay Leno says he broke several bones in motorcycle accident

"It just clotheslined me and, boom, knocked me off the bike."

Jay Leno at an event in 2017.
Jay Leno at an event in 2017. John Salangsang / AP, File

January has been a bumpy ride for Jay Leno.

On the same day that The Las Vegas Review-Journal published an interview with the comedian in which he revealed that he had recently broken several bones in a motorcycle accident, CNBC ended Leno’s reality show, “Jay Leno’s Garage,” after seven seasons.

The former “Tonight Show” host — who was raised in Andover, graduated from Emerson, and got his start in comedy on the Boston stand-up circuit — said that he suffered a broken collarbone, two broken ribs, and two cracked kneecaps on Jan. 17 when he ran into a wire while riding a 1940 Indian motorcycle, flinging him from the vehicle.


“I turned down a side street and cut through a parking lot, and unbeknownst to me, some guy had a wire strung across the parking lot but with no flag hanging from it,” Leno told the Review-Journal. “So, you know, I didn’t see it until it was too late. It just clotheslined me and, boom, knocked me off the bike. The bike kept going, and you know how that works out.”

Leno’s motorcycle mishap marks the second major injury for the comedian and automobile enthusiast in recent months. In November, Leno was hospitalized with second-degree burns on his upper body and face after a fire in his garage.

Despite the recent injuries, Leno told the newspaper he is still hard at work. The comedian is set to perform stand-up sets in several cities over the next couple of months, starting with a show at the Nugget Casino in Sparks, Nevada, on Feb. 24.

On the same day that the Review-Journal published the news of Leno’s injuries, CNBC issued a memo announcing sweeping changes to its primetime programming, which will result in “Jay Leno’s Garage” ending after seven seasons.

In the memo, CNBC president KC Sullivan said that the network will focus on its “core content of business news and personal finance.” CNBC anchor Brian Sullivan will host a new show during the 7 p.m. hour, while its primetime window will be home to business-focused documentary programming like “American Greed” and reruns of “Shark Tank” and “Undercover Boss.”


Leno began hosting “Jay Leno’s Garage” in 2015, in which the funnyman reviews classic cars with fellow celebrity gearheads appearing as guests.

With the cancellation of “Jay Leno’s Garage,” 2023 will likely mark the first time in 30 years that Leno has not had a show on an NBC-owned network.

Leno hosted “The Tonight Show” from 1992 to 2009, the primetime “Jay Leno Show” from 2009-2010, and returned to “The Tonight Show” from 2010-2014, famously bumping Brookline native Conan O’Brien out of the hosting chair.

Representatives for Leno did not return a request for comment.


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