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Details on Steve Austin convincing Vince McMahon to hire WWE Superstar

Steve Austin walked in on Eugene
Steve Austin walked in on Eugene's meeting with Vince McMahon
Danny Hart
FEATURED COLUMNIST
Modified 18 Feb 2021
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Former WWE Superstar Nick Dinsmore (aka Eugene) has recalled how WWE legend Steve Austin played a role in Vince McMahon hiring him.

Eugene performed in WWE’s former developmental system, Ohio Valley Wrestling (OVW), from 1997 to 2004. He told another OVW roster member, Doug Basham, in 2004 that he was considering going to wrestle in Japan. When WWE official John Laurinaitis learned of his idea, he set up a meeting between Eugene and Vince McMahon.

Speaking on Talk Is Jericho, Eugene said Stephanie McMahon liked the sound of his character when he pitched it during the meeting. Steve Austin entered the room and put in a good word for Eugene due to his association with Danny Davis. Davis, the founder of OVW, faced an up-and-coming Steve Austin earlier in his career.

“All of a sudden, Austin walks in. It was in February, Saturday Night’s Main Event, I think, where he came back. Austin walks in and Vince goes, ‘Have you ever seen him wrestle?’ ‘No, I don’t think so.’ Danny Davis trained me and I knew that Danny and Austin had a connection from Dallas, so he [Austin] looked at me and said, ‘He’s probably one of the best then.’”

Vince McMahon immediately decided that he was going to use Eugene on WWE television. The former OVW star made his main-roster debut on the April 5, 2004 episode of WWE RAW as Eric Bischoff’s storyline nephew.

Eugene’s WWE accomplishments

Eugene
Eugene's original WWE main-roster run lasted from 2004 to 2007

WWE’s presentation of Eugene is still talked about to this day. Eugene told Chris Jericho that his character, who had learning difficulties, inspired people to achieve their goals regardless of their situation in life. He said he has received more positive than negative feedback about the gimmick.

Eugene worked with high-profile names including Hulk Hogan, Kurt Angle, The Rock, and Triple H. He also became a WWE Tag Team Champion with William Regal.

Please credit Talk Is Jericho and give a H/T to SK Wrestling for the transcription if you use quotes from this article.

Published 18 Feb 2021, 19:05 IST
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