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When Steve Austin collided with WWE Chairman Vince McMahon, wrestling history was changed forever

5 WWE feuds that defined the 1990s

The 1990s will always be remembered as a transitional time in WWE history. It was a period that saw the promotion move away from colorful, cartoon characters to the intensity of the Attitude Era.

During this time, a host of heroes and a batch of bad guys helped tell the story of the era. Some of their rivalries were the foundation of the WWE that we see today.


Having said that, let's examine the five feuds that helped define WWE in the 90s.

#5. Bret Hart vs. Steve Austin


This feud is what eventually rocketed Stone Cold to a whole new level. In what ended up being a twist, the fans began rooting for the villainous Austin over the long-established hero Bret Hart. This all culminated in their historic WrestleMania 13 clash.

In what would go down as one of the highlights of both men's Hall of Fame careers, Austin held on while locked in Hart's sharpshooter. He eventually passed out due to exhaustion and blood loss.


It was the perfect story, and it was truly the final proof that the Austin Era was upon us. From there, the rest of the 90s belonged to The Rattlesnake.

#4. Ric Flair vs. Randy Savage

Ric Flair has always been described as the dirtiest player in the game. But he took it one step further in his rivalry with The Macho Man Randy Savage.


In 1992, Flair made his romantic intentions known towards Elizabeth, which only infurated Savage. In what became a memorable angle, The Nature Boy claimed that he had already been involved with her before Savage was. Hence, the famous "I Loved Her First" angle was born.

#OnThisDayinWWE 30 years ago on Wrestling Challenge:

Flair and Perfect insisted that it was Savage who doctored the Elizabeth photos, not them

Flair: "You bought the cow after I got all the milk for nothing!"

@NoContextFlair @FlairUncensored

YouTube/Wrestling with Paul

Flair went so far as to produce doctored photos, purporting to show him and Elizabeth spending romantic time together. It was a clever spin on a classic story and one of the most memorable feuds in the company's history.

#3. The Undertaker vs. Mankind

The Undertaker may be the darkest and most dominant figure in the history of WWE, but he certainly had a worthy challenger when Mankind debuted in 1996.

Mick Foley entered the promotion under the Mankind persona and immediately targeted The Deadman. From there, a series of brutal battles ensued.

Of course, their battles will always be framed by one of the most iconic images of all time: Mick Foley's epic fall(s) in their Hell in a Cell match. This is considered the moment Foley went from WWE Superstar to household name.

Over the years, the two men would continue their battles and even team together. Now both retired and in the Hall of Fame, they will be linked together forever because of their classic bouts.


#2. Bret Hart vs. Shawn Michaels

Out of all the feuds on the list, this one goes far beyond the ring. It was as personal as it gets.

Throughout the decade, Bret Hart and Shawn Michaels were considered the top two performers in the company. Their friendly rivalry got more and more tense over time, until the two men grew to dislike each other personally. That led to some pretty vicious moments that the world was able to witness.

Picture Of The Day, No63! HBK cutting his "Sunny Days" promo on Bret Hart, RAW 1997. #WWE2K15 #WWENetwork #WWE #RAW http://t.co/vfnxwmyLcn

This would, of course, lead to the infamous Montreal Screwjob, which saw Hart exit the company for well over a decade. He would eventually be inducted into the WWE Hall of Fame and make amends with HBK, but only after years of hard feelings and grudges.

#1. Stone Cold Steve Austin vs. WWE Chairman Mr. McMahon

Stone Cold Steve Austin hits the Stunner on Mr. McMahon

Arguably the greatest feud in the history of WWE, the McMahon-Austin rivalry changed sports entertainment in so many ways. It was The Boss vs. his disgruntled employee, and The Rattlenake seemed to find a way to win every time.


As much as the feud became part of wrestling lore and a gigantic financial success, it also became part of pop culture. Even non-wrestling fans were wearing Austin 3:16 t-shirts, spouting his catchphrases and tuning in by the millions to see what would happen next.

The importance of the Austin-McMahon storyline cannot be overstated. It helped propel WWE past WCW in the Monday Night Wars. But more importantly? It provided fans with some of the greatest moments they have ever witnessed.

Edited by
Jacob Terrell
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