Erik Watts recently recalled how Stone Cold Steve Austin changed the outcome of one of their matches in WCW.
The two men competed against each other on several occasions between 1992 and 1994. Austin was viewed as a hot prospect in the wrestling business at the time. However, his star power was nowhere near the level he achieved years later in WWE.
Speaking on “The Hannibal TV,” Watts discussed the conversation that Austin had with the then-WCW booker Grizzly Smith about the match result.
“Austin had been told that he was going to job [lose] for me,” Watts said. “I think it was in Charlotte, North Carolina. Austin told I think it was Grizzly Smith, ‘No, I’m not doing it,’ which in an industry standard, not because I’m who I am and not because he was who he was, nothing like that, that is a very dicey move no matter who you are.” [0:06-0:30]
Furthermore, Austin also refused to lose a match against Brock Lesnar on the June 10, 2002, episode of RAW. The Texas Rattlesnake no-showed the event and did not appear in WWE again until the following year.
While the legendary superstar had no problem losing to Lesnar, he felt the outcome did not make sense from a storyline perspective.
Erik Watts gives his opinion on Steve Austin
Due to Austin’s reluctance to lose, Watts offered to let his opponent win the match instead. The two men eventually reached a compromising point by agreeing to fight to a time-limit draw.
Watts enjoyed working with The Texas Rattlesnake and did not take offense when he refused to lose the match.
“I think we were very good friends,” Watts continued. “I said, ‘You can beat me with your finish out there. I don’t care.’ And it wasn’t because I knew he was gonna be Steve Austin [a megastar years later], he was just a tremendous athlete. And when I say consummate professional and workout and he lived it and breathed it and everything, he was just awesome.” [1:33-1:49]
Do you think Steve Austin was right when he refused to lose? Or should wrestlers simply do as they are told?
Let us know your thoughts in the comments!
Please credit “The Hannibal TV” and give a H/T to Sportskeeda Wrestling for the transcription, if you use quotes from this article.