Steve Austin Talks Wrestling CM Punk, His Neck, His Biggest In-Ring Mistake & More
On when he would have retired if not for his neck injuries: "I probably had a few more good years left in me. I probably would have made it to about two or three years ago. I'm 47 now, I probably would have wrapped it up at 44 or 45. It would have been time to ride off into the sunset. But, I rode off when I did, I had a dang good time and here we are, answering questions about the Broken Skull Ranch."
On what's going on with Andy Leavine, winner of Tough Enough: "Good ol' Andy. I don't know what happened to Andy. I assume he's still over there at the FCW training camp over there in Florida.
I told all those kids at Tough Enough that the tough part was for who ever gets out of Tough Enough and tries to go forward and get into the business of professional wrestling -- that's when the hard part starts. I think Andy is finding that out. He won Tough Enough. He won it fair and square. I picked him. I thought he was the best candidate. I still got high hopes for him. We'll see what happens in the future with Andy. Ol' 'Silent Rage'.
On his King Of The Ring speech and the birth of Austin 3:16: "I don't know if you remember, but I was kicked in the mouth by Marc Mero in an earlier match. They took me the hospital in an ambumance to get 14 stiches in my lip. When I came back from getting my mouth stitched up, I was just getting out of the ambulance and Michael P.S. Hayes came up to me. The guy who invented the Stunner or at least brought it over to me. He said, 'Steve, I just want you to know that while you were gone, Jake 'The Snake' Roberts cut a religious-based promo on you. You might want to remember that when you do your King Of The Ring speech later on.'
"So, as it was back in the day, you always saw John 3:16 signs in the endzones and I immediately thought of Austin 3:16. I just put two and two together, I came up with the 'thumping your bible' stuff and it turned out to be a grand slam. A good night at the office. If it hadn't been for Jake cutting that promo, if it hadn't been for Michael P.S. Hayes telling me about that promo -- hell -- if it hadn't been for Marc Mero kicking me in the mouth, none of that would have happened.
"It was a fluke, but it happened on the spot. I thought of it right before I went to the ring and I just let it fly. And, as a bonus part of that question; after I said the Austin 3:16 part, I heard Vince trying to wrap me up on the promo. So, that's when I said, 'And that's the bottom line, 'cause 'Stone Cold' said so.' I just needed to wrap up that interview. So, [I had] two grand slams in one at bat."
On whether or not he would come back to face C.M. Punk: "Would I? Maybe. If all the stars lined up and everything was good for him, good for me and good for WWE. I'd like to imagine it wouldn't take me over 30, 35 minutes to whoop his ass. That's all I have to say about that. Thanks for the question. And don't you go piping in, C.M. Punk. Because you're a punk."
On his biggest mess up in the ring: "I remember it well. I was working with one of my all-time favorites: Triple H. I can't remember where we were. I was going to hit him with the Thesz press. Most of the time, when I hit them with the Thesz press, their on the run and I catch them by surprise. It's a picture perfect, pivot bump.