Recently WWE has been shoving John Cena and Roman Reigns down the throats of the WWE Universe, but there was a time when merchandise sales and fan reaction influenced pushes and not the vice versa. In 1998 alone, one wrestler earned more than $1 million only on merchandise sales. He epitomized the Attitude Era and remains only the second Hall of Famer to be inducted by the chairman of WWE, Vince McMahon. In case you have not guessed whom the writer is talking about, he is the Dean Ambrose of the yesteryear — sigh — albeit a version about a million times better.
Stone Cold Steve Austin has arguably been the biggest star in the history of wrestling, though the likes of Hulk Hogan, The Rock, John Cena, and Roman Reigns — sarcasm intended — do not stand far behind. During his WWE tenure, he was regarded as the most notorious wrestler to ever set foot in the WWE ring and still holds the title. More importantly, WWE or any wrestling promotion can never create another Steve Austin.
Despite his laurels, his personal life has not always been a bed of roses though, as there are real life incidents that can crack the fans up as much as Stone Cold did. Like most other wrestlers or celebrities in general, his life is filled with betrayal, violence, love, mental issues, and many jests. In this article, we will take you through cherry-picked insane stories from the life of Stone Cold Steve Austin.
Disclaimer: The writer does not intend to hurt the repute of Steve Austin, and stories that seem to disparage him are from his ex-partners. However, we aim at shedding light on the life of the wrestler we all grew to love.
With that being said, feel free to let us know in the comments below if we missed any crazy stories that you have heard about the Texas Rattlesnake.
20 Birth Of Austin 3:16
With the language used by the Superstars scrutinized by sponsors these days, WWE scripts nearly every promo in its entirety. However, the functioning of the business was different then from what it is today, as the superstars used to write their own promos — imagine the number of times Roman Reigns would have pulled a Sycho Sid if the tradition prevailed.
While feuding with Jake Roberts, who was then performing under a missionary gimmick, he pulled off his now infamous Austin 3:16 promo, much to the excitement of the crowd. “You sit there and you thump your bible, and you say your prayers, and it didn't get you anywhere! Talk about your Psalms, talk about John 3:16, Austin 3:16 says I just whipped your ass,” said Stone Cold, who had just thumped the Snake to win the King of the Ring tournament.
The insane part of this story is that without the help of writers, or any other member of creative, Steve Austin came up with his iconic phrases during this promo; off the top of his head!
19 Austin The Convict
Usage of steroids comes with an awful inevitable side effect called "roid rage" that allegedly drives the user into a period of insanity. Stone Cold, an alleged steroid user, is no exception as evidenced by his violent behavior toward his third wife Debra Marshall. Shortly after leaving the WWE, his wife was found bruised at the couple's home in San Antonio. He was arrested eight weeks after the incident, but never served any jail time, though the jury ordered him to give up alcohol for 12 months, pay a fine of $1,000 and perform 80 hours of community service.
Rumor has it that the McMahons paid Debra not to disclose the details of the incident, as doing so would tarnish the reputation of both the company and its legend. However, after the Chris Benoit tragedy, she told the press that Stone Cold had, in fact, beaten her three times and divulged WWE's gag order that kept her from uttering a word about their tumultuous marriage.
18 Traveling Partners
Although Austin is known for being a loner, did you know that he actually used to travel with Mick Foley, DDP, Kevin Nash, Raven, Rick Rude and Brian Pillman? Sure it was during different times in his career, but still, that is an impressive lineup of guys sharing the steering wheel. Even more insane, is that when Austin was riding with wrestling legend Rick Rude, he wasn't allowed to swear in the car. Rude claimed that he was offended at Austin's language due to him being a Christian, and demanded that he refrained from cursing while riding together. OH HECK YEAH!
17 Backlash For Taking His Ball Home
WWE has a bizarre penchant for giving the worst sendoffs to their employees. As Stone Cold parted ways with the company unannounced, they chose to belittle him in his absence by having The Rock telling him to "get the F out" of the company. Stone Cold was the least amused with the way WWE dealt with his departure. "The problem was with me and Vince, it wasn’t with me and Rock. I thought that was the biggest chickens**t thing I’d ever seen done to me, so far in the business, for him to go out and call me out," wrote an infuriated Stone Cold in the February 2003 edition of Raw magazine.
While many believe the Raw magazine interviews were usually works, his words sounded intense though the duo buried the hatchet quietly after the bustles. What some people may not know is that during the seven months that Austin left WWE, he personally lost millions of dollars, and wasn't on speaking terms with anyone from WWE. The only person who would even hold conversations with Austin was Jim Ross, who was ultimately responsible for Austin's return.
16 Dumping the Hulkster
Biggest stars from different generations locking horns with each other inside the squared circle always excites the WWE Universe; however, such matches hardly excite the Superstars involved . Sometimes the idea of two icons meeting overexcites them as evinced by Shawn Michaels' 'fantastic' match with Hulk Hogan at SummerSlam (2005). In one such scenario, Stone Cold admitted to deny fighting the Hulkster at WrestleMania X8 because of the professional animosity between them, though he was, in fact, unsure whether the Hulkster would put him over.
However, he has since been trying to save face, stating the reason for him turning down the opportunity to share the stage with him was due to Hogan's age; ultimately worrying about match quality. Though Austin has admitted that he would have appreciated a bout akin to the iconic match between the Hulkster and The Rock at WrestleMania X8.
15 Torturing Animals
Austin's relationship with b-movie actress Tess Broussard has been popular for all the wrong reasons. In an interview shortly after their breakup, she claimed that Austin would hurt her pets in desperate attempts to hurt her. While she was out of town, he apparently locked her felines in a closet before leaving the house for a business trip. Their neighbor, who watched the house, would rescue the cats, which reportedly looked malnourished, dying, and covered in feces. How the neighbor found his way to the closet remains a mystery, though.
14 No More Beer
Austin's first encounter with beer was at the age of 14, and even casual fans should know that his favorite brand is Budweiser. He loves beer so much and his penchant for beer is so marketable, that Los Angeles-based brewing company El Segundo has joined hands with him to launch his own brand named Broken Skull IPA. However, his choice of alcohol has toned down, as he lately prefers wine to beer.
“Back in the day I was really into the big cabs from Napa Valley, and my wife's a big fan of some of the Italian wines, but now I'm more of a pinot noir guy–something a little bit on the lighter side. So yeah, I'm a bit of a wine connoisseur,” said the grappler who used to drench himself — and his opponent, employer, and the ring — with beer.
13 Near-Death Experience
It's fair to say that Austin's relationship with Tess Broussard was wrong on so many levels. In a particular incident, Stone Cold accused her of stealing his eight championship belts, stealing an expensive painting, destroying his furniture with a knife, and putting a gun down his throat. Many believe that he filed a lawsuit against her for $125 million only as a desperate attempt to make her drop the $10 million that she had filed against him. The fact that the Texas-born wrestler never involved the police department soon after she assaulted him and waited until she filed a suit against him makes his attempts to curtail her legal advances look ridiculous. It's pretty wild to think that the Texas Rattlesnake had a little woman holding a gun to him, threatening to end his life.
12 Birth Of Stone Cold
The Ringmaster was one horrible gimmick, but WWE would have made his next gimmick more terrible had the three-time Royal Rumble winner accepted the WWE's proposals for his name straight away. Despite getting the nod from the head honchos for a rebellious persona, he was struggling to name it imaginatively whilst also not sounding stupid. WWE apparently faxed him of these names: Ivan the Terrible, Ice Dagger and Fang McFrost — by the looks of things, WWE has been having creative issues since inception.
His second wife accidentally coined the name Stone Cold whilst requesting him to drink his tea "before it [got] stone cold" as he had forgotten he even had tea in front of him because of the itch for arriving at a new moniker. With much excitement, she declared he would be called Stone Cold Steve Austin thereafter. He would file for a divorce not soon after, though.
11 Worst Enemy Outside Ring
Jeff Jarrett has made only a few friends in WWE, and this article's protagonist is certainly not one. Upon his return to the WWE, Double J cut a promo in which he directly dissed Stone Cold for being blasphemous, referencing his famous Austin 3:16 promo; he slated him for rubbishing the bible to strictly line his pockets. Waiting for Double J to come backstage, an enraged Austin stood with a blood red head, and as soon as he came, he lashed out at him and threatened to get him fired.
Stone Cold even told onlooker Vince Russo to never book him with the Global Force Wrestling founder ever again. With Double J gaining huge momentum as an upper mid-carder, the notorious booker proceeded to book them together after six months only for Stone Cold to repeat everything word-by-word he had told him six months ago. Some speculate that this is even the reason that Vince McMahon publicly mocked Jarrett after the mogul purchased WCW.
10 Ex-girlfriend’s Accusations
Tess Broussard claims that her then-alcoholic boyfriend abused her mentally to the point of withholding her from watching certain television channels, including MTV, HBO, Cinemax, Showtime, and Black Entertainment Television, and even stated that he called her a n***** lover for watching BET. She alleged that her prior career appearing in adult movies played a part in him being paranoid.
Stone Cold came across as childhood hero for almost everyone who started watching wrestling during the Attitude Era, but he looked less a role model after her revelations. The McMahons might have had a breather, as he was no longer under their umbrella when these claims headlined major news outlets.
9 Apologizing To Raven
Steve Austin has been known to be very controlling of his partners with (you guessed it) Tess Broussard revealing that he would never introduce her to male colleagues. His confrontation with Raven all but confirms his possessiveness. Debra was cutting a promo backstage near the shower, when Raven suddenly popped up wearing nothing but a towel. Rumor has it that Raven loved flaunting his body in front of female talents.
When the Texas Rattlesnake knew of the incident, he grabbed Raven and verbally whipped him until Raven told him that he was unaware of Debra's presence. Apparently, Stone Cold apologized to Raven shortly after the squabble. Keep in mind from above that these two men used to be riding partners, so Austin shooting to rage so quick is pretty crazy.
8 Started A Mark
Since the bloom of the internet, anyone who thinks wrestling is real is ridiculed as much as Vince McMahon has ridiculed Jim Ross over the years. Not a lot of readers might be able to digest the fact that the baddest SOB in wrestling competed in his first professional match against Frogman LeBlanc for World Class Championship Wrestling thinking he was venturing into a competitive sport. Part of his obliviousness was due to his wrestling coach Chris Adams' reluctance to burst his bubble; he only taught him the wrestling moves. The then-certified mark, however, went on to transform into the biggest draw in the history of sports entertainment.
7 Spousal Abuse
Debra has reportedly been bruised by Stone Cold very often, though the WWE employees chose to ignore it, as he was the biggest star back then. "When Steve Austin was pounding on me that last time with his steroid rage, pounding on me, his eyes were bugging out of his head, and it was a rage like the most horrifying thing you've ever seen," said Debra while recalling a one such incident in which she was the recipient of the vicious attack at the hands of Stone Cold.
When she tried calling the cops, a paranoid Stone Cold would yank the phone lines out, before unplugging the garage door openers and pulling the wires out so she remained inside of the house.
6 Inspiration By A Serial Killer
Movie characters have inspired many successful gimmicks, but the poster boy of the Attitude Era sought inspiration from serial killer Iceman, real name Richard Kuklinski. HBO aired a documentary about the self-professed mafia hitman, who took hundreds of lives. Impressed by his persona, the Bionic Redneck incorporated it into his heel gimmick, who never gave a damn about anybody. “I could, as perverse as it sounds, relate to this animal,” wrote Stone Cold in his autobiography The Stone Cold Truth. He also revealed that he would have adopted the Iceman moniker if it were not for the former National Wrestling Alliance wrestler, Iceman King Parsons.
5 Shutting Out The Kliq/Inspiring The Rock
The Kliq's antics need to introduction — we insist on reading this article about their insane behavior if you have no idea who they are. The Rock and Stone Cold were embroiled in the biggest feud in professional wrestling, and were set to main event WrestleMania, but members of The Kliq tried politicking Vinne Mac into de-pushing The Rock as they were trying to propel Triple H to main-event status.
"[Expletive] those [expletives]. We're here to draw and make money and that's exactly what we're gonna do. We draw big money then everyone benefits," said Stone Cold to a stressed out Rock. The Rock recently posted to his Instagram that he still repeats his words as his business mantra, and going by the amount of money has since made, we suggest that every reader should follow that mantra.
4 Affair With A Teenager
In an another article here on TheSportster, we discussed many underage relationships. Here is another cringe worthy one. Tess Broussard, after cutting ties with the Hall of Fame wrestler, revealed a disturbing story about him. She claimed that he was exchanging explicit emails with a 16-year-old foreign fan. She even proceeded to claim that he had admitted to sharing his hotel room with the kid while touring overseas. Broussard added that he had denied having intercourse with the kid.
The ensuing quarrel between the couple culminated in Stone Cold throwing her from the vehicle. Shortly before the assault, a drunken Broussard told him she was calling the cops only for him to smash her phone. The truth-value of this particular story is unknown as Austin's side of the story is yet to be made public.
3 Best Exchange Ever
There is no force stopping if the gimmick reflects the real life character of the wrestler. The exchange between the Rock and Steve Austin prior to their match at WrestleMania XV reveals why his Stone Cold persona reached heights that had never been reached before. Before locking horns, The Rock said to Stone Cold, "Steve, this is it. Tonight is our night. We are gonna make magic together. It is electrifying. We are gonna make history." Stone Cold, however, was not so excited as he said to the defending WWE Champion, "Shut up!" before launching a punch on his countenance. There cannot be a better proof that he truly was the toughest SOB in the WWE.
2 Stunners No Matter What
If the crowd wants a Stone Cold Stunner, then by God, Austin is going to give it to him. The Rattlesnake has confessed on his podcast many times that his stunners were very painful to deliver every night, especially considering his neck was in horrible shape. Despite the pain, Austin would deliver his finisher repeatedly to please the fans. But did you know that this year at WrestleMania 32, Stone Cold tore his rotator cuff prior to the event? Yes, Steve Austin performed three Stunners with a torn shoulder...the show must go on right?
1 One helluva success story
Dwayne Johnson posted on his Facebook few years ago how he first ventured into the world of professional wrestling with only $7 to his name. Stone Cold's history is much similar to The Rock. He was paid only two Alexander Hamiltons for a night's toils early on. He has often stated that he slept most of his nights in his car as no wrestling promotion paid for hotel expenses or food back then.
While working for United States Wrestling Association, Jerry Jarrett paid him a very little money and the biggest WWE superstar only survived on boiled potatoes. He has admitted that his decision not to work with his son Jeff Jarrett is completely because of the way the Jarretts had treated him during his rookie years. Looking back on his career, though there will surely be a few regrets for him, he has lived the life every wrestling fan dreams of.
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