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Steve Austin (born Steven James Anderson; December 18, 1964, later and formerly Steven James Williams),[1] better known by his ring name "Stone Cold" Steve Austin,[2] is an American film and television actor and retired professional wrestler currently signed to WWE. Austin wrestled for several well-known wrestling promotions such as World Championship Wrestling (WCW), Extreme Championship Wrestling (ECW) and most famously, the World Wrestling Federation (WWF), which later became World Wrestling Entertainment (WWE) in 2002. Billed as "The Most Popular Superstar in WWE History",[3] he gained significant mainstream popularity in the WWF during the mid-to-late 1990s as "Stone Cold" Steve Austin, a disrespectful, beer-drinking antihero who routinely defied his boss, Vince McMahon.[4] This defiance was often shown by Austin flipping off McMahon and incapacitating him with the Stone Cold Stunner, his finishing move.[5] McMahon inducted Austin into the WWE Hall of Fame in 2009. Austin is also known for his love of beer, especially Busch.

Austin held nineteen championships throughout his professional wrestling career, and is recognized by WWE as a six-time World Champion, having held the WWF Championship on six occasions, and the fifth Triple Crown Champion. He was also the winner of the 1996 King of the Ring tournament, as well as the 1997, 1998 and 2001 Royal Rumbles. He was forced to retire from in ring competition in early 2003 due to a series of knee and neck injuries sustained throughout his career. Throughout the rest of 2003 and 2004, he was featured as the Co-General Manager and "Sheriff" of Raw. Since 2005, he has continued to make occasional appearances. In 2011, Steve Austin returned to WWE to host the reality series Tough Enough.

Early lifeAustin was born Steven James Anderson in Victoria, Texas. After his father left the family, his mother, Beverly, re-married to Ken Williams, and Austin adopted his stepfather's surname, and spent most of his childhood in Edna, Texas[1] After attending high school, Austin got a football scholarship at Wharton County Junior College, followed by a full scholarship at North Texas State University

Professional wrestling career"Stone Cold" Steve Austin

Ring name(s) "Stone Cold" Steve Austin[2]

The Ringmaster

"Stunning" Steve Austin

"Superstar" Steve Austin

Billed height 6 ft 2 in (1.88 m)[6]

Billed weight 252 lb (114 kg)[6]

Born December 18, 1964 (1964-12-18) (age 46)[1]

Austin, Texas[7]

Resides Los Angeles, California

Billed from Victoria, Texas[6]

Trained by Chris Adams[8][9]

Debut May 11, 1989[8]

Retired March 30, 2003[8]

[edit] World Championship Wrestling (1991–1995)Main articles: Dangerous Alliance, Hollywood Blonds, and Stud Stable

After some time, Austin decided to become a professional wrestler and enrolled at the wrestling school run by Chris Adams, whose school was run out of the Dallas Sportatorium where he was wrestling for World Class Championship Wrestling. Austin made his debut in World Class in 1989 under his real name, but was later given the name "Steve Austin" by Memphis-area booker Dutch Mantel. Austin's run in Memphis was part of the merger between World Class and the Continental Wrestling Association out of Memphis, with the combined company known as the United States Wrestling Association. Austin would eventually return to Dallas and feud with Adams, with Percy Pringle and Jeannie Adams (Adams' real-life former wife and Austin's girlfriend at the time) as his valets. It was during this time Austin adopted the "Stunning" nickname that followed him to WCW.

Austin left WCCW after its final folding in 1990 and signed with WCW the next year. He was originally paired with a valet named Vivacious Veronica,[10] but was later joined by Jeannie Adams, known as "Lady Blossom".[9][10] Just weeks after his debut, Austin defeated Bobby Eaton for his first WCW World Television Championship on June 3, 1991. Later that year, Austin joined Paul E. Dangerously's Dangerous Alliance.[9][11] Austin lost the WCW Television Championship to Barry Windham in a two out of three falls match on April 27, 1992. He regained the title from Windham on May 23.

Austin enjoyed a second lengthy reign before losing to Ricky Steamboat on September 2, 1992. The Dangerous Alliance disbanded shortly thereafter.[12] At Halloween Havoc, he replaced Terry Gordy, teaming with "Dr. Death" Steve Williams to wrestle Dustin Rhodes and Barry Windham for the unified WCW and NWA World Tag Team title.[12] The teams wrestled to a thirty-minute time limit draw.[12]

In January 1993, Austin formed a tag team known as The Hollywood Blonds with Brian Pillman.[9] They won the WCW World Tag Team Championship on March 3, defeating Ricky Steamboat and Shane Douglas. The Hollywood Blonds held the title for five months.[9] At Clash of the Champions XXIII the Blonds faced Ric Flair and Arn Anderson in a two-out-of-three-falls tag Team title match. Flair and Anderson defeated the Blonds, but were not awarded the title as one fall had been determined by a disqualification.[13] At Clash of the Champions XXIV, Austin and Pillman were scheduled to defend their title against Anderson and Paul Roma. An injured Pillman, however, was replaced by Steven Regal. Austin and Regal lost to Anderson and Roma.[14] With Pillman still injured, Austin joined Colonel Robert Parker's Stud Stable.[15] After Pillman returned, Austin betrayed and defeated him in a singles match at Clash of the Champions XXV.[16]

At Starrcade, in a two-out-of-three-falls match, Austin defeated Dustin Rhodes in two straight falls to win the WCW United States Heavyweight Championship.[9] Austin lost the title to Ricky Steamboat on August 24, 1994. Austin was scheduled to face Steamboat in a rematch for the title at Fall Brawl, but Steamboat was unable to wrestle due to a back injury, and Austin was awarded the title by forfeit. His second reign as US Champion ended just minutes later when he lost to Steamboat's replacement, Jim Duggan in a match that lasted thirty-five seconds.[17] Austin unsuccessfully challenged Duggan for the United States Championship at both Halloween Havoc 1994 and Clash of the Champions XXIX.[18][19] After returning from a knee injury in early 1995, Austin took part in a tournament for the vacant WCW United States Heavyweight title, where he defeated Duggan via count-out in the first round, but lost to Randy Savage in the quarterfinals.

[edit] Extreme Championship Wrestling (1995)In 1995, Austin was fired by WCW Vice President Eric Bischoff, after suffering a triceps injury, while wrestling on a Japanese tour; Bischoff and WCW did not see Austin as a 'marketable' wrestler.[9][20] Austin described his opinion on being fired over the phone as Eric Bischoff having taken the coward's way out. Eventually, Austin was contacted by Paul Heyman of Extreme Championship Wrestling (ECW), who had managed him in WCW.[9] Heyman hired Austin to do in-ring interviews, as he still had not recovered from his injury enough to wrestle.[21] While in ECW, Austin used the platform to develop his future "Stone Cold" persona as well as a series of vignettes running down WCW in general and Bischoff in particular.[9][21]

While with ECW, Austin was known as "Superstar" Steve Austin.[22] He had a match with The Sandman and feuded with Mikey Whipwreck.[22] Whipwreck, who was the ECW World Heavyweight Champion at the time, defeated Austin at November to Remember.[23] The Sandman defeated Steve Austin and Whipwreck in a Triple Threat match at December to Dismember in 1995 for the ECW World Heavyweight Championship.[24] Heyman would later state that he had wanted Austin to win the ECW Title, but Austin had refused because he felt he was more effective "as the hunter, rather than the hunted."

[edit] World Wrestling Federation/Entertainment (1995–2002, 2003-present)[edit] The Ringmaster (1995–1996)Main article: Million Dollar Corporation

In late 1995, Austin joined the WWF after Kevin Nash and Jim Ross helped convince WWE's owner Vince McMahon to hire him.[9][22] Initially, Austin wrestled as "The Ringmaster" and was managed by Ted DiBiase,[9] who awarded him with the Million Dollar Championship.[25] Stone Cold Steve Austin defeated Savio Vega at in his first WrestleMania appearance, at WrestleMania XII.[26] During this time, Austin shaved his head bald. At In Your House: Beware of Dog, Austin lost a "Caribbean Strap match" to Vega. In accordance to the pre-match stipulations, DiBiase was forced to leave the WWE, giving Austin the opportunity to forge his own path.[27] Austin later told announcer Dok Hendrix (Michael P.S. Hayes) that he had purposely lost the match in order to rid himself of DiBiase, who was headed for rival promotion World Championship Wrestling (WCW).

[edit] Austin 3:16 and rise to superstardom (1996–1997)Austin's genuine rise to superstardom began at the 1996 King of the Ring. Austin began using his trademark finishing maneuver, the Stone Cold Stunner; with this new technique, he won the King of the Ring tournament.[9] After defeating Marc Mero in the semi-finals, Austin defeated Jake "The Snake" Roberts in the finals.[9][27] At the time, Roberts was portraying a born-again Christian, so after the match, Austin cut a now famous promo during his coronation, telling Roberts,[28] "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 whupped your ass!". "Austin 3:16" ultimately became one of the most popular catch phrases in wrestling history,[9] and subsequently the slogan became one of the best-selling t-shirts in WWE merchandise history.

Austin spoke about Bret Hart constantly and taunted him relentlessly. Hart finally accepted Austin's challenge and returned to the WWF in October 1996. At Survivor Series, in a match to determine the number-one contender to the WWF Championship, Hart pinned Austin in a match which helped create the foundations for the eventual year-long feud between the two.[27] The match came hot on the heels of an incident broadcast live on Raw, which saw Austin "break into" Brian Pillman's house, with Pillman holding a gun. During the 1997 Royal Rumble match, Austin was originally eliminated by Bret Hart, but the officials did not see it, and he snuck back into the ring and eliminated Hart by throwing him over the ropes, winning the match himself.[29] This led to the first-ever pay-per-view main event of Austin's WWF career at In Your House 13: Final Four, after Shawn Michaels suffered a knee injury and left the WWF Championship suddenly vacant. Austin was eliminated early from the four-way match at In Your House 13 for the title after injuring his own knee, but was involved in the finish which saw Hart win his fourth WWF Championship,[27] which he lost the next night on Raw to Sycho Sid due to Austin's interference, continuing his feud with Hart. At WrestleMania 13, Hart defeated Austin in a 'Submission' match with Ken Shamrock as a special referee. During the match, Austin had been cut and was bleeding profusely from his face, but he still refused to tap out when Hart locked in his Sharpshooter. Austin finally passed out from blood loss, still held in the Sharpshooter, and lost the match. Hart, after the bell, continued to assault Austin, who despite his wounds refused any assistance back to the locker room, thus turning Hart heel and Austin babyface in a rare double-turn.[27] Austin eventually got his revenge on Hart in the main event of In Your House 14: Revenge of the 'Taker, in a match to determine the number-one contender to The Undertaker's WWF Championship. Austin won when Hart was disqualified due to assistance from The British Bulldog, earning him a title match against The Undertaker at In Your House 15: A Cold Day In Hell. Austin faced Hart once again in a street fight on the April 21 episode of Raw, injuring his opponent's leg with a steel chair during the bout. The match was ultimately awarded to Hart when Austin refused to let go of his own Sharpshooter. He proceeded to beat Hart while on a stretcher in the back of an ambulance. At A Cold Day In Hell, Austin had The Undertaker down with the Stunner, but while distracted with a timely interference by Brian Pillman, Stone Cold's old tag partner, Undertaker nailed Austin with a Tombstone Piledriver and achieved the victory.[27]

During this time, Austin found a way to win the WWF Tag Team Championship on two separate occasions. On May 25, 1997, Austin and Shawn Michaels defeated Owen Hart and The British Bulldog for the title. They held the title until July 14, before Michaels was forced to vacate due to an injury.[30] That same night a tournament was held to determine who would face Austin and a partner of his choosing for the vacant championship. Hart and Bulldog won the tournament, with Austin refusing to pick a partner and choosing to wrestle the former tag team champions by himself.[31] Late in the match, a debuting Dude Love came out to offer assistance and Austin became a two-time tag team champion.[32] Austin continued his feud with the Hart family, becoming embroiled in a heated rivalry with Owen Hart, who pinned a distracted Austin and secured victory for The Hart Foundation in the ten-man Tag Team match main event of In Your House 16: Canadian Stampede, where Austin was partnered with Ken Shamrock, Goldust, and The Legion of Doom.[33]

At SummerSlam, Austin and Owen Hart faced each other with Hart's Intercontinental Championship on the line and an added stipulation that Austin would have to kiss Hart's buttocks if he lost.[31] During the match Hart botched a piledriver and dropped Austin on his head, resulting in a legitimate broken neck and temporary paralysis for Austin. As Hart stalled by baiting the audience, Austin managed to crawl over and pin Hart using a roll-up to win the Intercontinental Championship. A visibly injured and dazed Austin was helped to his feet by a number of referees and led to the back. Due to the severity of his neck injury, Austin was forced to relinquish both the Intercontinental Championship and the Tag Team Championships. Austin was sidelined until Survivor Series. However, in the interim he made several appearances, one being at Bad Blood where he was involved in the finish of a match between Hart and Faarooq, which was the final match in a tournament for the Intercontinental Championship. Austin hit Faarooq with the Intercontinental Championship belt while the referee's back was turned, causing Hart to win the match.[31] Austin's motive was to keep the Intercontinental Championship around Hart's waist, as demonstrated when he interfered in Hart's matches on the October 20 and 27 episodes of Raw.[31] Austin regained the Intercontinental Championship from Hart at Survivor Series.

With Hart out of the way, Austin set his sights on The Rock, who stole Austin's belt on the November 17 episode of Raw after Austin suffered a beating by his Nation of Domination stablemates.[31] In the weeks to come, The Rock began declaring himself to be "the best damn Intercontinental Champion" ever.[31] The Rock kept possession of the belt until D-Generation X: In Your House, when Austin defeated him to 'retain' the title and get his belt back. As Austin had used his pickup truck to aid in his victory, McMahon ordered him to defend the title against The Rock the next night on Raw.[31] In an act of defiance after forfeiting the title to The Rock, Austin tossed the belt into a New Hampshire river.[6]

[edit] Feuding with Mr. McMahon (1997–1999)On September 22, 1997, on the first-ever Monday Night Raw to be broadcast from Madison Square Garden, Owen Hart was giving a speech to the fans in attendance. During his speech, Austin entered the ring with five NYPD officers following, and assaulted Hart. As it looked Austin was going to fight the officers, Vince McMahon ran into the ring to lecture Austin about why he couldn't be "physically" able to compete. After telling McMahon that he respects the fact that he and the WWF cared, Austin attacked McMahon with a Stone Cold Stunner, leaving McMahon in shock. Austin was then arrested on charges of trespassing, assault, and assaulting a police officer. This marked the beginning of the Austin-McMahon rivalry.

With Bret Hart's departure for WCW, Austin and Shawn Michaels were the top superstars in the company. Austin won the 1998 Royal Rumble, lastly eliminating The Rock.[34] The next night on Raw, Austin interrupted Vince McMahon in his presentation of Mike Tyson, who was making a special appearance, over the objection of McMahon referring to Tyson as "the baddest man on the planet." Austin flipped off Tyson, which led to Tyson shoving Austin much to McMahon's embarrassment, who began to publicly disapprove of the prospect of Austin as his champion. Tyson was later announced as "the special enforcer" for the main event at WrestleMania XIV, although he appeared to be aligning himself with WWF Champion Shawn Michaels' stable D-Generation X.[9][35] This led to Austin's WWF Championship match against Michaels at WrestleMania XIV, which he won with help from Tyson, who turned on DX by making the deciding three-count against Michaels, and later hit HBK with his knock-out punch. In fact Shawn Michaels had suffered two herniated discs and another completely crushed at the hands of The Undertaker in a Casket match at the Royal Rumble.[9] This victory ushered in the Austin Era,[9] and with it, The Attitude Era

On the Raw after Austin won the WWF Title, Vince McMahon presented him with a new title belt and warned Austin that he did not approve of his rebellious nature and that things could be done "the easy way or the hard way." Austin gave his answer in the form of another Stunner. This led to a segment a week later where Austin had pledged a few days prior in a meeting to "play ball" with McMahon, appearing in a suit and tie, with a beaming McMahon taking a picture of himself and his new corporate champion. The entire thing was a ruse by Austin who in the course of the segment proceeded to tear off the suit, tell McMahon it was the last time he would see Austin dressed like this, punch his boss in the "corporate grapefruits," and take another picture of the two of them while McMahon was doubled over in pain. In April 1998, it appeared Austin and McMahon were going to battle out their differences in an actual match, but the match was declared a no-contest when Dude Love made an appearance. This led to a match between Dude Love and Austin at Unforgiven: In Your House, where Austin hit McMahon with a steel chair, then the following month they had a rematch at Over the Edge: In Your House for the WWF Championship. Austin managed to retain the title despite McMahon acting as the referee and his "Corporate Stooges" (Gerald Brisco and Pat Patterson) as timekeeper and ring announcer, respectively.

McMahon continued to do everything he could to ruin Austin, and he finally scored a big victory for his side at the 1998 King of the Ring tournament.[9] There, Austin lost the WWF Championship to Kane in a First Blood match.[9] Austin further infuriated McMahon by winning back the championship the next night on Raw.[9] Austin also emerged victorious against The Undertaker at SummerSlam. In response, McMahon set up a Triple Threat match at Breakdown: In Your House, where The Undertaker and Kane pinned Austin at the same time. McMahon decided to vacate the WWF Championship[9] and award it based on a match between The Undertaker and Kane, in which Austin was the guest referee. Austin refused to count for either man and attacked both towards the end of the match. McMahon later fired him, although Austin got revenge by kidnapping McMahon and dragging him to the middle of the ring at "gunpoint," which ended up being a toy gun with a scroll that read "Bang! 3:16." Also the segment was very "embarrassing" to McMahon as it showed he was so scared that he urinated his pants. Stone Cold was later re-signed by Shane McMahon. In the semifinals of the Survivor Series tournament to award the vacant WWF championship, Austin lost to Mankind, after Shane double-crossed Austin. The next night on Raw, Judge Mills Lane ruled that The Rock had to defend his newly won WWF Championship against Austin that night. The Undertaker interfered and hit Austin with a shovel, earning Austin a disqualification victory, but The Rock kept the championship. At Rock Bottom: In Your House, Steve Austin defeated The Undertaker in a Buried Alive match after Kane Tombstoned The Undertaker into the grave. With this victory, Austin qualified for the 1999 Royal Rumble.

Austin's next definitive chance to exact revenge on Mr. McMahon came during the 1999 Royal Rumble match. On Raw, McMahon drew Austin's entry number with the obvious intention of screwing him over. Austin drew entry number one, while McMahon drew number two thanks to WWF Commissioner Shawn Michaels. During the Rumble match, McMahon slipped out of the ring and into the crowd as Austin chased him down. It turned out to be a trap as McMahon led Austin into the lobby restroom where he was ambushed by members of The Corporation. Austin was injured and taken away in an ambulance. With Austin gone and not in the Rumble match, McMahon joined the announce table in calling the match. Later on, however, Austin returned in an ambulance and re-entered the Royal Rumble, delivering a Stunner to the Big Boss Man and eliminating him. With the assistance of the Corporation and a last minute interference from The Rock, Austin was eliminated by McMahon himself, and McMahon won the 1999 Royal Rumble.[9] With McMahon turning down his number-one contender spot against The Rock, WWF Commissioner Michaels awarded Austin the title shot during Raw the next night. At St. Valentine's Day Massacre, Stone Cold got a one-on-one match against McMahon in a Steel Cage match, with the WWF Championship opportunity at WrestleMania XV at stake.[9] During the match, Paul Wight made his debut, breaking through from under the ring and attacking Austin. Wight's attack propelled Austin into the side of the cage forcing the cage to give way and dropping Austin to the floor first, making him the victor.[9] Austin defeated The Rock at WrestleMania XV for his third WWF Championship.[9]

Austin faced The Rock in a rematch at Backlash, in which Shane McMahon was the referee. During the match, Vince McMahon approached the ring, only to hand Austin back his 'Smoking Skull' belt and take Shane out of the proceedings. Austin won the match when another referee made the count. The Undertaker, however, won the WWF Championship from Austin at Over the Edge. Due to events revolving around Vince McMahon, Stephanie and Linda McMahon made Stone Cold the Chief Executive Officer of the company. Vince and Shane McMahon challenged Austin to a Handicap Ladder match at King of the Ring with the CEO title on the line, which the duo of father and son won. The next night on Raw, however, Austin made it clear that while he was the CEO of the company, he could have a title shot at any time and place to be determined by himself. Austin made the WWF Championship match that night on Raw and defeated The Undertaker to win his fourth WWF Championship. However, after he won it, The Undertaker came and hit him with the title belt, leading to a First Blood match between the two at Fully Loaded where Mr. McMahon stipulated that if Austin lost he would never be able to wrestle for the WWF Championship again, and if Austin won, he would never see McMahon again. Austin won after interference from X-Pac, hitting The Undertaker with a TV camera and gave McMahon a goodbye Stone Cold Stunner. Austin held on to the WWF Championship until SummerSlam when he lost it to Mankind in a Triple Threat match also featuring Triple H.[9] Austin would get his rematch at No Mercy against Triple H but lost after The Rock accidentally struck him with a sledgehammer that was meant for Triple H. When Survivor Series rolled around, Triple H was still champion. Austin was booked into a Triple Threat match for the WWF Championship against Triple H and The Rock. However, Austin was run down by a car in the parking lot.[9] The Big Show would replace Austin in the match and would win the WWF Championship. What followed was neck surgery by Dr. Lloyd Youngblood and a nine-month rehabilitation with the car angle as his reason for leaving.[9] In reality, Austin had needed neck surgery since the Owen Hart incident in 1997

Return and heel turn (2000–2001)Main article: The Power Trip

Austin appeared at Backlash 2000, attacking Triple H and Vince McMahon to help The Rock reclaim the WWF Championship. At Unforgiven, Austin made his official return. The company, meanwhile, tried to find out who ran him down at Survivor Series the previous year.[9] Rikishi finally admitted to being the driver because "he did it for the people."[9] At No Mercy, Austin was back to face Rikishi in a No Holds Barred match. During the match, Austin motioned he was going to drive his truck into Rikishi, who by that time was a bloody mess. Before he could, he was stopped by officials, the match being deemed no-contest and Austin was (kayfabe) arrested and later bailed by Commissioner Mick Foley. During a handicap match against Rikishi and Kurt Angle, Triple H came down with the apparent intention of teaming with Austin. After clearing the ring, Triple H smashed his sledgehammer over Austin's head, and revealed it was actually him behind the whole scheme, devised to shield the WWF Championship from Austin and end his career. At Survivor Series, Triple H had plotted to run Austin down again during their match (thus repeating the events of the previous year's Survivor Series) but his plot failed when Austin lifted Triple H's automobile with a forklift, then let it drop 20 feet, causing Triple H to shout "Holy shit!" just before the car was released. Also, in the year 2000, Stone Cold Steve Austin competed in a 6 man Hell in a Cell match at Armageddon for the WWF Championship, against Triple H, the Undertaker, Rikishi, Kurt Angle and The Rock. In the end, Stone Cold Steve Austin gave The Rock a Stunner and was about to pin him when Triple H came in the way and got a stunner. But Kurt Angle took advantage of the situation and pinned The Rock and picked up the victory, hence retaining the WWF Championship. After the match, Stone Cold Steve Austin delivered a stunner to Kurt Angle, while he was celebrating his victory.

Austin won his third Royal Rumble in January 2001,[36] last eliminating Kane. His rivalry against Triple H ended at No Way Out in a Three Stages of Hell match, with Triple H beating Austin two falls to one. Then, at WrestleMania X-Seven, Austin turned heel by hitting The Rock with a steel chair several times to win the WWF Championship.[9] After the match, Austin shook hands and shared a beer with Vince McMahon. With the victory, Austin became a five-time WWF Champion. The next night on Raw, after teasing a quick face turn, the heel turn continued. He also altered his character considerably over the next few months, in a deliberate turn from the rebellious and anti-establishment character beloved by the fans, Austin became a whiny, temperamental prima donna who would complain incessantly when he felt he was not getting the respect from the fans and wrestlers that he deserved. He also developed an infatuation with McMahon, going to great lengths to impress him and even going so far as to hugging him and bringing him presents. McMahon, though visibly uncomfortable and wary by the attention, was still grateful to have Austin with him instead of against him. During a cage match with The Rock in a rematch for the title, Triple H came down to the ring with a sledgehammer and together with Austin viciously attacked The Rock and put him out of action. Austin further cemented his heel turn the following Thursday on Smackdown! when, during an interview with Jim Ross about his actions at WrestleMania, thought Ross was denouncing their friendship and then proceeded to attack and brutally assault Ross. Austin and Triple H became a team and called themselves The Two-Man Power Trip.[9]

Austin and Triple H were the top heels in the company, and feuding with The Undertaker and Kane. After defeating Kane and The Undertaker for the WWF Tag Team Championship at Backlash2001, they held the Tag Team Titles, the WWF Championship (Austin), and the WWF Intercontinental Championship (Triple H) all at once. At Judgment Day2001, Triple H lost his Intercontinental Title to Kane. Then, the following night on Raw, Austin and Triple H wrestled against Chris Jericho and Chris Benoit with the Tag Team Titles on the line. Midway through the match, Triple H tore his quadriceps muscle.[9] As planned, the team lost the Tag Team Titles at the end of the match when Triple H accidentally hit Austin in the stomach with a sledgehammer, but the injury to Triple H, which kept him out for the remainder of the year, forced the WWF to go in another direction. Austin had a minor injury for a month.

[edit] The Invasion (2001)See also: The Invasion

Austin was paired with Kurt Angle and feuded against Jericho and Benoit. This culminated with a Triple Threat match at King of the Ring, in which Austin faced the former tag team champions. Although WCW's Booker T interfered, Austin scored the victory and retained his championship. The feud ended at that point, as Benoit had neck surgery after the match, sidelining him for the following year.

In July 2001, with Benoit out for surgery, the Austin/Jericho feud was dropped without a mention. With the Rock still away making movies, the WWF desperately rushed out the plans for The Invasion. As The Invasion storyline began and progressed, McMahon was watching helplessly as his empire crumbled around him due to The Alliance luring more and more talent away from the WWF, and his biggest allies, Austin and Angle, were too busy sucking up to him and bickering amongst themselves to successfully counter the Alliance. Austin made it known that he was against teaming with Angle, whom Austin saw as both a threat to his WWF Championship, as well as an annoying tag-along. A frustrated McMahon appealed to Austin to return to his old Texas Rattlesnake persona, even imploring him to give him a Stone Cold Stunner. Though intending to fire up Austin, it backfired and only seemed to hurt the feelings of Austin, as he promptly left the arena, dejected. But the week before InVasion, the old Stone Cold Steve Austin "returned," delivering Stunners to the Alliance members. This was all part of the setup for a swerve at the event, where Austin betrayed the WWF team and partner Angle to help the Alliance win, as Austin assumed leadership of the group.[9] The reason why Austin did this was that he felt McMahon was grooming Angle to take over his spot, and that he himself was "unappreciated" when McMahon insisted he return to the old Austin. This turned him heel once more.

Austin lost and regained the WWF Championship in a feud with Angle, who was put over by Austin as a threat. Austin lost the title to Angle at Unforgiven before regaining it on the October 8, 2001 episode of Raw.[9] In a swerve, Angle joined the Alliance just before Survivor Series.[9] As the Invasion angle dragged on, it was ultimately decided to bring the plot line to an end with Austin and a group of ECW and WCW wrestlers facing The Rock and a group of WWF wrestlers at the Survivor Series. Austin and his team lost after Angle betrayed him, thus ending the Invasion angle. The next night on Raw, as McMahon was about to award Angle with the WWF Championship for actions at Survivor Series, Ric Flair came out and announced that he owned half of the WWF. Austin came out and attacked Angle and McMahon, taking back the WWF Championship. Austin then had a beer bash with Flair, turning Austin face once again. Austin would hold the WWF Championship for another month before losing it to Chris Jericho at Vengeance 2001 due to interference from Booker T. Jericho defeated both The Rock and Austin consecutively that night, winning the WCW World Title and later the WWF Title and combining them to create the unprecedentedWWF Undisputed Championship. After that, Austin continued another feud with Booker T. In one angle, Austin defeated Booker T in an unofficial grocery store fight.

[edit] Issues with Bookings and Creative Teams (2002)Beginning 2002, although Austin's character remained with the WWF's most popular wrestlers as top face, his upcoming story lines in the build-up to WrestleMania were somewhat questionable compared to those of his previous years. In the 2002 Royal Rumble, Triple H made his long-awaited return from injury, with he and Austin two of the last four participants in the ring along with Kurt Angle and Mr Perfect. Austin was eliminated by Kurt Angle, however he shortly went back in the ring and hit all three with a steel chair. A few days later on Raw he defeated Kurt Angle to earn a shot at Chris Jericho's WWF Undisputed Championship at No Way Out 2002.

In the build-up to No Way Out, McMahon had re-signed the New World Order, who started a feud with him after (kayfabe) Austin refused a beer gift. Problems in the backstage creativity were however then seemingly beginning to surface. Austin was reported as being unhappy regarding Hulk Hogan's return to the WWF, and was reported as refusing to lose to Hogan in a proposed match at WrestleMania X8, while Hogan reportedly told McMahon the same regarding losing to Austin. Consequently, the match was re-billed as The Rock defeating Hogan, whilst Austin defeated Scott Hall, climaxing his feud with the nWo.

In a surprise altercation the next night on Raw, Austin refused to show up and took a week-long break without the company's consent, claiming exhaustion. McMahon claimed his actions caused fury among fans who had paid to see him that night. Austin returned on the April 1, 2002 episode of Raw, the first of the new "brand extension" era. The show was centered on which show he would sign with, and he ultimately chose Raw. Austin entered a feud with The Undertaker that resulted in a number-one contender's match for the WWE Undisputed Championship at Backlash 2002, which Austin lost despite having his foot on the rope when he was pinned. He would later be betrayed by Big Show, who went on to rejoin the nWo, and Ric Flair. Austin then defeated Big Show and Flair in a handicap match at Judgment Day.

[edit] Departure from WWEIn an interview on WWE television by telephone in May 2002, Austin stunned the company and fans by launching a verbal attack on the direction the company was heading in and slated the creative team for not using him the way he felt they previously did. The commentators struggled to keep Austin's opinions on a neutral wavelength, leading to the WWE apologising to fans for the outburst and stated it was not part of Austin's current or upcoming storylines. McMahon responded a week later on the same show playing down the outburst, claiming that Austin was merely the type of wrestler who was occasionally difficult to work with.

The WWE rehired Eddie Guerrero for Austin to feud with, while also prepping Austin for a feud with Brock Lesnar. Austin, however, vetoed any matches that would result in him losing to Lesnar and ultimately walked out of the company.[37] Austin later explained that he thought hot-shotting a rookie made Austin look weak and did not give Lesnar a proper stage for such a big win over a star of the magnitude that Austin held.

Further fanning the flames amongst Austin's growing number of detractors was a well-publicized domestic dispute incident between Austin and his wife Debra.[37]

On June 3, following the dispute with Debra, Austin made his last appearance for WWE on Raw. After Austin no-showed the episode of Raw the following week, his storylines were dropped.[37]

Austin walked out again publicly stating he felt bad storylines were presented to him by the creative team. This time his departure was for good.[37] McMahon, along with longtime Austin supporter and real-life friend Jim Ross, buried Austin on WWE programming, referring to him as "taking his ball and going home" because he wasn't getting his way, whilst also explaining to the fans that neither he nor Ross were able to persuade Austin to change his mind. McMahon insisted that Austin owed an apology to all the fans across the world, especially those who paid solely to see him that night. McMahon toasted to Austin's career with a beer thanking him for all his hard work nonetheless. The Rock also made an appearance on Raw despite being drafted to Smackdown!, and announced his frustrations towards Austin.

Austin's merchandise continued to sell greatly in the weeks following his departure, however with no sign of a return likely to be seen, the company stopped marketing his character, his merchandise, and removed his profile from WWE.com.

This period was documented in an episode of WWE Confidential.

Return to WWE and retirement (2003–2004)

Austin faces off against The Rock at WrestleMania XIX in Austin's last match.For the remainder of 2002, Austin kept a low profile and did not make any public appearances in or out of wrestling. It was reported however by the end of the year, Austin and McMahon met and resolved their differences. He then agreed to return to the company in early 2003.

In an interview with WWE Raw Magazine, he announced deep regret over the situation that led to his departure and the way in which he'd left, and deeper regret over inaccurate speculation regarding his alleged grudges held against other WWE wrestlers, claiming he had no problem with Scott Hall rejoining the company, although he admitted he still held strong reservations about his singles match with Hall at WrestleMania only lasting 7 minutes and felt build-up to the match did not live up to his or Hall's fans expectations, and was angered by speculation suggesting he disagreed with Kevin Nash re-joining the company, insisting he and Nash have always been good friends. He confessed he had a major rift with Paul Levesque's (Triple H's) role in the company upon his return in 2002, but insisted as of 2003 they resolved their issues. In addition, he claimed a brief dispute with Dwayne Johnson (The Rock) was resolved quickly upon his return, and that none of his disputes with the talent roster continued or played the major part in his departure.

In February, Austin returned at No Way Out in a short match against Eric Bischoff. Austin would wrestle only one match between then and WrestleMania in another short match against Bischoff on Raw but was then defeated by The Rock at WrestleMania XIX, who returned about the same time as a smug, "sell out" villain, which, ultimately, became Austin's last official match in WWE. It was also revealed later in the documentary "The Mania Of Wrestlemania" (Based around the Wrestlemania 19 event) that the letters O.M.R were put on his jacket for his match against The Rock symbolically meaning "One More Round"

The night after on Raw, Bischoff (kayfabe) "fired" Austin on medical grounds. The next morning, Austin gave an interview on wwe.com announcing his retirement from wrestling, although he stated that he and Vince McMahon had reached an agreement seeing him only appear in non-wrestling roles on a weekly basis. In reference to Bischoff firing him on Raw that week, he said that although firing was for storyline purposes, he admitted the medical problems read out on Raw were real and mainly related back to his injury sustained at SummerSlam 1997 in a match with Owen Hart, and had begun to seriously plague him since late 2001. He confessed wrestling against the advice of his doctors up to his departure in 2002, which forced him to quit wrestling, and cited this as the sole reason as to why he suddenly departed, with doctors advising an awkward or violent move performed on him could have resulted in Austin being permanently disabled or resulting in death.

The following week, Austin began his non-wrestling career with the WWE and began a fresh storyline when he was brought back by Linda McMahon as the Co-General Manager of Raw. He continued this storyline for the remainder of the year, still showing wrestling moves including the Stone Cold Stunner and several exchanges of punches and kicks, although limiting regularity of these being performed. On the November 17, 2003 edition of Raw, Austin was "fired" from Raw as the result of a stipulation in a match at Survivor Series where Austin's hand-picked team of wrestlers failed to beat Bischoff's team of wrestlers. Austin quickly returned to WWE television before the end of 2003 when he was part of the WWE Tribute to the Troops taped live in front of U.S. troops in Iraq, posing and stunning Mr. McMahon. He finally came back on Raw on December 29 as its "Sheriff", giving a Stone Cold Stunner to Eric Bischoff and rehiring Shawn Michaels, who had just been "fired" by Bischoff.

Austin appeared on and off as 2004 began, culminating in him being the special guest referee for the notorious match between Brock Lesnar and Goldberg at WrestleMania XX in which fans cheered for Austin and jeered both Lesnar and Goldberg due to both men announcing their departures from the company following the event. Then, on April 17, WWE put out a press release on their website claiming that Steve Austin and WWE were unable to settle long-running contract disputes and had again parted ways.

[edit] Hall of Famer (2005-present)Austin made his first appearance on WWE programming in a year at WrestleMania 21 where he was confronted by "Rowdy" Roddy Piper in Piper's Pit until Carlito interrupted to insult both. This resulted in Carlito receiving a Stone Cold Stunner from Austin and Piper throwing him out of the ring. The segment ended with Austin and Piper celebrating with beer until Austin gave Piper a Stone Cold Stunner as well. He then appeared on the following nights Raw.

At ECW One Night Stand Austin came to the ring following the show's main event. Wearing a Las Vegas Outlaws (of the failed XFL) jersey, Austin came to the ring to give The Sandman a beer which he had asked for. However, Austin invited the whole locker room to the ring for a Beer Bash. However, before the bash he demanded the WWE Crusaders come to the ring for a fight. Tazz came to the ring, which started the brawl. After Taz applied the Tazzmission to Kurt Angle the brawl ended. ECW stood alone in the ring after throwing all of the Crusaders out of the ring. Mick Foley (as Cactus Jack) then dragged Eric Bischoff to the ring. The Dudley Boyz gave him a Dudley Death Drop, followed by Chris Benoit giving him a Diving Headbutt, Rey Mysterio followed that with a 619. When Austin then asked Bischoff about his feelings on the night, he responded with "Fuck ECW", which prompted Austin to give Bischoff a stunner. As the Dudley Boyz took Bischoff outside, and loaded him onto a WWE production truck, the remaining ECW Originals took part in a "beer bash" as the show went off the air. He was on Raw the following night.

Then, at WWE Homecoming, Austin again returned to Raw, delivering Stunners to all four members of the McMahon family.[38] An angle including Jim Ross being fired led to a match in which Austin agreed to face Ross's replacement, Jonathan Coachman, at Taboo Tuesday, with the stipulation of Ross regaining his announcing job if Austin were to win and Austin losing his own job if he lost the match. Austin hurt his back prior to the match, and could not wrestle unless he was heavily medicated, so the match was cancelled. To explain away his failure to appear at Taboo Tuesday, Vince McMahon said on Raw that Austin had been involved in an accident, thus preventing him from competing. Batista substituted for Austin defeating The Coach along with Vader and Goldust. The stipulation was dropped due to Austin not competing.[39]

Austin returned to WWE briefly to face John "Bradshaw" Layfield in a beer drinking contest at the March 5, 2006 edition of Saturday Night's Main Event. Austin won by disqualification as he saw JBL cheating by pouring the beer down his clothes. Austin gave a stunner to JBL and then celebrated with the Stone Cold beer salute. Austin then inducted Bret Hart into the WWE Hall of Fame on April 1, 2006.[40]

Austin returned to WWE programming (appearing on Raw, ECW, and SmackDown!) in March 2007, partially to promote his starring role in the release of WWE Films' production, The Condemned. On March 31, 2007, Austin inducted his friend Jim Ross into the WWE Hall of Fame. At WrestleMania 23, Austin, as a special guest referee, officiated the match between Bobby Lashley and Umaga. The stipulation for the match was that if Lashley lost, Donald Trump's head would be shaved, and if Umaga lost, Mr. McMahon's head would suffer the same fate. In the course of the event, Austin delivered stunners to Umaga, Vince McMahon, Shane McMahon, and Donald Trump. Lashley eventually won the match, and Trump, Austin and Lashley then shaved Mr.McMahon's head on live TV. Stone Cold ended by stunning McMahon as well as Donald Trump and toasting beers.[41] He then appeared in a video on the June 11 edition of Raw as part of "Mr. McMahon's Appreciation Night", where he shared his thoughts on his past feuds with McMahon.

Austin appeared on the August 18, 2007 edition of Saturday Night's Main Event, as a possible illegitimate child of Mr. McMahon and stunned McMahon and Jonathan Coachman. Austin appeared at SummerSlam where he was the replacement for Matt Hardy to battle Montel Vontavious Porter in a Beer Drinking Contest. The match ended in a no contest after Austin handed a beer to MVP and gave him the Stone Cold Stunner.[43] Austin made another appearance at Cyber Sunday, where he guest refereed a World Heavyweight Championship match between the champion Batista, and the challenger The Undertaker. Batista walked out the champion after delivering a Batista Bomb to The Undertaker.On the November 5, 2007 edition of Raw, Austin made an appearance to confront Santino Marella for criticizing The Condemned.[44] The argument ended as Marella received a Stone Cold Stunner from Austin, who then walked backstage only to return with a Budweiser beer truck to hose down Marella and his valet Maria with beer.[44] On December 10, 2007 during the Raw 15th Anniversary Spectacular, Austin returned after Vince McMahon received the mandible claw from Mankind and a chokeslam from The Undertaker for proclaiming himself "the greatest Raw superstar of all time." Shortly after, McMahon received a Stone Cold Stunner(which as of 2011, would be the last one McMahon would take, because in July 2011, McMahon was told by his doctors not to take anymore "bumps"[45]) as Austin called out all WWE stars in attendance to the ring to celebrate the 15th anniversary of Raw. The show closed as Austin, Triple H and Hornswoggle poured beer on McMahon, who was knocked out outside the ring.

On October 26, 2008, at Cyber Sunday, Austin was the special guest referee during a match between Batista and Chris Jericho for the World Heavyweight Championship. In between the match Stone Cold told a fleeing Jericho that if he was counted out or disqualified, Batista would win the title. During the course of the match, Batista accidentally knocked Austin down. When Austin recovered, Randy Orton, who had come out as the third referee, knocked Austin back down, only to receive a Stone Cold Stunner when Austin recovered. Eventually Batista won the match by hitting his signature Batista Bomb on Chris Jericho, leading Austin to give the three count, making Batista the new World Heavyweight Champion.[46]

On January 12, 2009, edition of Raw, Austin was announced to be the first member of the WWE Hall of Fame Class of 2009.[47] He was inducted by his long-term on-screen rival Vince McMahon, who referred to Austin as "The Greatest WWE Superstar of all time." During the induction, there were "one more match" chants, to which Austin said he was officially closing the door on his wrestling career and starting a new chapter in his life. At WrestleMania XXV, Austin was introduced alongside the WWE Hall of Fame Class of 2009. After the introductions, Austin's theme music hit, and he re-entered the ringside area wearing a vintage "Austin 3:16" shirt driving an ATV. He then enjoyed his trademark beer bash with the fans.

Austin returned to the company on the March 15, 2010 episode of Raw as its guest host. On that episode of Raw he moderated a contract signing between Vince McMahon and Bret Hart for their match at WrestleMania XXVI. In the same episode Austin met up backstage with his longtime rival Shawn Michaels, who asked Austin whether he believed that Michaels could end the Undertaker's undefeated WrestleMania streak in their upcoming match. Austin replied "Hell yeah I think you can beat the Undertaker, but I don't think you're going to, The streak is going to go 18-0". Michaels lost the match extending the Undertaker's streak to 18-0 and forcing Michaels to retire.

On the 900th episode of "Raw"; which took place on August 30, 2010; the intro and theme for Stone Cold Steve Austin were shown. However, this was only a trick by fellow wrestler CM Punk who was attempting to prove a point about what the Straight Edge Society believed was a disturbing history of the WWE. Steve Austin did not actually make an appearance on this night.

Austin in WrestleMania XXVII, performing his entrance with his signature ATV.In early 2011, Austin was announced as the head trainer and host for the revival of WWE Tough Enough. On the March 7 edition of Raw, Austin interrupted the contract signing of the special guest referee to the Michael Cole and Jerry Lawler match at WrestleMania XXVII, originally scheduled to be John "Bradshaw" Layfield. After stunning Layfield, Austin signed the contract instead and became the official guest referee for the scheduled match.[48] Although Lawler won by submission, the anonymous Raw General Manager reversed the decision and disqualified Lawler, claiming that Austin had "overstepped his authority". He appeared on Raw the following night with the cast from Tough Enough, while also getting into an altercation with The Miz and Alex Riley

On April 7, 2011, Austin gave an Interview where he talked about his return, filming Tough Enough and the respect he has for CM Punk. Austin was asked about a return to the ring and said that he felt that if he had to, he had two more years in him and could still do a full-time schedule. However, he then stated that he was happy with where he was at in life and wanted to be able to hunt and fish 10–20 years from now and be able to do it pain free.

On the June 6th edition of Raw, Austin appeared live alongside old rival Vince McMahon to declare Andy Leavine as the winner of Tough Enough. He also served as the Special Guest Referee in the evening's tag team main event, John Cena and Alex Riley vs. The Miz and R-Truth. The end of the match came as a result of Austin hitting the infamous Stone Cold Stunner on The Miz, which was followed by an Attitude Adjustment from Cena and then the pinfall victory. However, the Anonymous Raw General Manager chimed in and the GM's ringside mouthpiece Michael Cole announced that since Austin had abused his authority as referee, The Miz and R-Truth win via disqualification. Austin did not take kindly to the GM overturning his decision and Cole also received a Stunner, which was followed with another Attitude Adjustment courtesy of Cena. Austin and Cena closed the show, celebrating with a beer bash.

Austin was the special guest GM on the 3-hour All-Star edition of Monday Night Raw, eminating live from the Nassau Veterans Memorial Coliseum (or simply Nassau Coliseum) in Long Island, New York, where all Superstars and Divas have performed. Also in his special guest GM time, He destroyed the GM Laptop by running over it with his ATV. This is the second time the GM Laptop was destroyed since Edge destroyed it on September 27, 2010.

He also announced that the next week of Raw (June 20, 2011, also the Raw after Capitol Punishment); eminating live from the 1st Mariner Arena in Baltimore, Maryland; will be another 3-hour show where the WWE Universe takes the authority to choose the opponent or stipulation of a match. He then announced that the show is named "Power to the People".

[edit] Television and film careerSteve Austin filmed guest roles on Celebrity Deathmatch and Nash Bridges, where he played Detective Jake Cage. His motion picture debut was in a supporting role as Guard Dunham in the 2005 remake of The Longest Yard. Austin had his first starring film role, as Jack Conrad, a dangerous convict awaiting execution in a Salvadoran prison, who takes part in a illegal deathmatch game that is being broadcast to the public in the 2007 thriller The Condemned. In 2010, Austin appeared in the film The Expendables as Dan Paine, the bodyguard and right hand man for the primary antagonist of the film. This role featured Austin working alongside other action stars such as Sylvester Stallone, Jason Statham, Jet Li, Terry Crews, and Randy Couture. It has been suggested by Bruce Willis that he will return for a sequel of The Expendables.

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FilmYear Film Role Notes

2005 The Longest Yard Guard Dunham

2007 The Condemned Jack Conrad Produced by WWE Films

2009 Damage John Brickner Direct-to-video

2010 The Stranger The Stranger

The Expendables Dan Paine

Hunt to Kill Jim Rhodes Direct-to-video

2011 Knockout Dan

Tactical Force Tate

2012 Recoil John Varrett

The Package Thomas Boyette

[edit] TelevisionYear Film Role Notes

1998–2002 Celebrity Deathmatch Himself 4 seasons

1999 Teen Choice Awards Himself

1999–2000 Nash Bridges Detective Jake Cage Six episodes

2000 Dilbert Judge One episode

2005 The Bernie Mac Show Himself

2010 Chuck Hugo Panzer Two episodes

2011 Tough Enough Host/head trainer

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Personal lifeAustin dated Kathryn Burrhus throughout high school and college, and the two married on November 24, 1990. Nonetheless, Austin pursued a relationship with Jeannie Clark ("Lady Blossom"), with whom he was working. His marriage to Burrhus was quickly annulled on August 7, 1992,[49] and Austin and Clark married on December 18, 1992. Together, they have two daughters, Stephanie (born in 1992) and Cassidy (born in 1996).[50] He also adopted Jade, Clark's daughter with former husband Chris Adams. Jade is also married to professional wrestler Adam Windsor.[51] Austin and Clark divorced on May 10, 1999 and their daughters live in Southend-on-Sea, England with Clark, while Jade lives in America with her husband and son.[50][52]

In December 2007, the Wrestling Observer newsletter reported that "Stone Cold" Steve Austin legally changed his real name (Steven Williams) to his wrestling name Steve Austin.[53] Austin currently resides in Los Angeles, California and Tilden, Texas.

Marriage to Debra MarshallOn September 13, 2000, Austin married WWE Diva Debra Marshall.[54] On June 15, 2002 police were called to their residence in San Antonio, Texas.[37] They found a hysterical Marshall with bruises.[55] Austin had left the house and was asked by police not to return. On August 14, 2002, Austin was arrested and charged with domestic abuse. He pled no contest on November 25, 2002 and was given a year's probation, a $1,000 fine, and ordered to carry out eighty hours of community service.[56] Marshall would later claim that Austin was a steroid user and this incident was the result of roid rage.[57] Austin filed for divorce from Marshall on July 22, 2002 and the divorce was finalized on February 5, 2003.[58] On June 29, 2007, Marshall told Fox News that Austin beat her three times.[59] She also stated that WWE put a gag order on her so she would not reveal that Stone Cold hit her, as it would cost the company millions of dollars.[60] The WWE did not respond to her allegations.

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In wrestling

Finishing moves

As "Stone Cold" Steve Austin

Stone Cold Stunner (Seated three-quarter facelock jawbreaker, usually preceded by a kick to the midsection)

As "Stunning" Steve Austin

Stun Gun (Flapjack dropped into a hangman)[61]

As The Ringmaster

Million Dollar Dream (Cobra clutch)

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Championships and accomplishmentsPro Wrestling Illustrated

PWI Feud of the Year (1998, 1999)[67] vs. Vince McMahon

PWI Match of the Year (1997)[68] vs. Bret Hart at WrestleMania 13 in a Submission match

PWI Most Hated Wrestler of the Year (2001)[69]

PWI Most Popular Wrestler of the Year (1998)[70]

PWI Rookie of the Year (1990)[71]

PWI Wrestler of the Year (1998, 1999, 2001)[72]

PWI ranked #1 of the Top 500 singles wrestlers in the PWI 500 in 1998 and 1999[73][74]

PWI ranked #19 of the Top 500 singles wrestlers in the PWI Years in 2003[75]

Teen Choice Awards

Choice Pro Wrestler (1999)

Texas Wrestling Federation

TWF Tag Team Championship (1 time) – with The California Stud[76]

World Championship Wrestling

WCW United States Heavyweight Championship (2 times)[77]

WCW World Tag Team Championship (1 time) – with Brian Pillman[78]

WCW World Television Championship (2 times)[79]

NWA World Tag Team Championship (1 time) - with Brian Pillman[80][81]

Million Dollar Championship (1 time)[82]1

WWF Championship (6 times)[83]

WWF Intercontinental Championship (2 times)[84]

WWF Tag Team Championship (4 times) – with Shawn Michaels (1), Dude Love (1), The Undertaker (1) and Triple H (1)[85]

King of the Ring (1996)[86]

Royal Rumble (1997, 1998, 2001)[87]

Slammy Award for Freedom of Speech (1997)

Fifth Triple Crown Champion

WWE Hall of Fame (Class of 2009)

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