Former Metallica bassist Jason Newsted left the group 12 years ago. Does he regret walking out?

Jason Newsted recently talked to Metal Forces Magazine and says that him leaving Metallica actually saved the band, and for that, he has no regrets about it.

In fact, Jason says that he saved the band twice. He says, "I saved Metallica when I entered their band and I saved them when I left their band, Because I did both of those things, they're still around. If I had never left when I did, it would've imploded. The band would be gone."

He joined the band in 1986 after their original bass player, Cliff Burton was killed when their tour bus rolled over after hitting a patch of ice and in the process saving Metallica from breaking up. Jason says he saved the group from certain self destruction when he left in 2001.

Metallica seems like such a solid band. How would they have "imploded" as Jason put it? Turns out, Jason explains that he was hooked on painkillers due to a neck injury. He asked the rest of the group if they could please take a year off so he could heal and the band said no, so he left. Jason was then replaced by Rob Trujillo who still plays with Metallica today.