Steve Austin On Refusing To Job To Brock Lesnar in 2002

Dec 21, 2019 - by Steve Gerweck

Austin On Refusing To Job To Brock Lesnar in 2002, Regretting His WrestleMania 17 Heel Turn & What’s Missing From Today’s WWE

Steve Austin was on a recent episode of Pardon My Take and discussed what WWE is missing today. Highlights are below.

On what’s missing from WWE today:

“When you used to watch back in the Attitude Era when we had the Monday Night Wars, Nitro had this hot open, and then we had our pyro coming down, pow, pow, pow, it was sense of urgency. You felt like anything could happen at any one time, and to me, and I’m not picking on today’s product, but I just think the spontaneity is lost. That feeling that anything could happen is lost.”

On a time he got upset with Vince McMahon backstage:

“Yeah, we got along for the most part all the time. It was funny, I tell people to this that are still in the game. There was a day back when I was the guy, if I called Vince, his phone didn’t ring one full time, ‘Hello?’ Because I was that guy. Hell, now I ring it and it goes to voicemail and I’m lucky if he calls me back. But we always got along for the most part. Every now and then we wouldn’t see eye-to-eye on certain things. I remember one specific time in Cleveland, Gund arena, they had me booked with someone that I already said, I would not work with this person. And we were in a room, about the size of this one, and man, I let loose with some real colorful language, and I let everybody know exactly what I thought, because I told you, ‘Don’t put me in this situation, you did,’ I said, ‘Now I’m the fucking bad guy.’ I said, ‘I told you not to do this to me.’ And it was much worse than that.”

On refusing to job to Brock Lesnar in 2002:

“And the time they wanted me to fly down to Atlanta for Monday Night RAW and put over Brock Lesnar. The night before, I was working in Columbus, Georgia working with Ric Flair in a cage, so I was like a kid in a candy store working with the GOAT, so of course I didn’t show up because it wasn’t time for me to do the favors yet for Brock in an unadvertised match in a tournament style TV match whereas, hey man, I love Brock Lesnar, I’d lose to him any day of the week, but build it up so we can all make money off of it and it’s going to mean something. And when you get a guy red hot, and I just had Hogan on the podcast, and I’ll put myself there, but when you get guys who really, really draw stupid money, it’s a very delicate balance that you just don’t take stupid liberties with or you’ll kill it off and you can never recreate it. So I was very protective of myself, maybe too much so, but it took me seven and a half years to get there so no one was going to yank the carpet out from underneath my feet, not even Vince.”

On how he regrets his WrestleMania 17 heel turn:

“I’ve re-thought that thing so many times, and if I could call the audible now, I would have just told him, ‘Hey man, I ain’t feeling it,’ because here’s how I was feeling leading into that. I thought I was starting to flatline just a little bit, and I said, ‘OK man, a change is good,’ and Vince always likes to do something big at a WrestleMania, well we didn’t really have anything big there, so I was like, ‘Hey, I’ll turn heel, that’s what we do, you get hot, and then you turn heel, and then it’s even hotter.’ Most times, yes, but it has to be warranted and it has to be for a reason. And all of a sudden, when I did that that night, if I could go back, I woulda just said, ‘Hey man, I’m calling an audible,’ watch the stunner, and then stun his ass, woulda maintained my babyface run.”

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