Kevin Owens recently spoke with Sporting News ahead of this week's WWE King of the Ring first round tournament match against Elias. Owens talked about his KOTR memories and how cool it is for him to be in the tournament now.

"I was always a huge fan of the King of the Ring tournament just because that concept is really interesting to me, especially when it was a one-night tournament," Owens said. "I just felt that was great. Tournaments themselves, I'm always interested in them and the King of the Ring was the best one for me. Obviously, all the winners and how many tournaments I was able to watch as a fan and all the guys that won it, most of them went on to become big deals in WWE whether it was Steve Austin or Kurt Angle or Triple H or Owen Hart, Bret (Hart), all those guys.

"I'm really excited to be in it. I'm excited that it's back. In a way, it's kind of cool because I remember when I was on the independent scene and I'd get to the Battle of Los Angeles in PWG (Pro Wrestling Guerrilla), that was like our own little version of King of the Ring, for me. Now I get to be in the actual thing, in the real King of the Ring tournament, so that's pretty great. It's like my first Royal Rumble match. Those are things I grew up watching and now I get to be a part of it. It's thrilling."

Regarding his feud with Shane McMahon, Owens was asked if he thought it would have ended by now and if it's surprised it's still continuing. Owens said he feels like there's still places they can go with the feud.

"I kind of expected it to keep going just because Shane, he's obviously not going anywhere because of who he is. I'm not surprised that we're going to keep going. I feel like there's still avenues to go. There's still stuff we can do together, so we'll see what happens," Owens said.

Owens has been hit with several questions on WWE Hall of Famer Steve Austin and the use of his Stone Cold Stunner during recent media interviews, and this piece was no different. Owens was asked how he would assess his version of the Stunner.

"You know, it's actually, I don't know how to describe it," Owens said. "Obviously, it's big shoes to fill, right? Not that I'm trying to be in Steve's shoes, but when you're doing a move that's been so iconic for so long, it's hitting right and it's working well. The crowd reaction is always really cool to it. It's nice to almost be able to bring it back just because I remember how it used to make me feel when he'd hit it and how exciting it was visually and all that stuff. I'm just trying to do right by it, I guess."