Steve Austin Admits To Emulating Ric Flair's Style, Talks Moment He Realized He Was A "Star"

WWE Hall Of Famer “Stone Cold” Steve Austin recently appeared as a guest on The Dan Patrick Show to promote his new series on the USA Network, “Straight Up Steve Austin,” which airs after WWE RAW every Monday night.

Featured below are some of the highlights from the interview, as well as a complete video archive of “The Texas Rattlesnake’s” appearance on the program.

On when he realized he was a star: “I started feeling it one night in Chicago at the Rosemont Horizon (now the Allstate Arena). That’s one of my favorite buildings to work in, the favorite, because of it’s wood ceilings and the acoustics are so good in there. And the Chicago crowd is so crazy. Anytime you do something, you’re listening to that crowd and if you’re not listening to that crowd you’re doing it wrong because everything you do, you do it to elicit a response. Based on that response, you respond accordingly. So it was one night we were in a tag match and I started really feeling the energy from that crowd responding to everything I did. I said ‘hey man, this is coming on.’”

On building his character: “You kind of go out there and you’re learning. You’re learning who you want to be and I emulated Ric Flair when I first started out and when I was Stunning Steve back in Georgia and everybody because of my ability back then at the mechanic stage said ‘hey man, this guy right here is gonna be the next Ric Flair.’ Well, there’s never going to be the next Flair so, I was more of a technical wrestler back in the day. Then in ’97 when I got dropped on my head and almost got paralyzed and bruised my spinal cord, I had to modify my style and not be so technical and turned more into a brawler. That’s when I came up with the ‘Stone Cold’ Steve Austin thing and with the modified style, the gimmick, or the name, that I grew into, I realized that when I turn myself up to an 11, that’s who I am and that’s when everything started to work for me.”

On his heel turn in WWE not working: “Well, they revolted. They didn’t want to hate me. By that time they loved me so much. You always want to do something big at WrestleMaina. I didn’t think we had anything big that year, so I told Vince ‘hey man, I’ll turn heel.’ At a certain point, you just kind of flip and you think things are going to get hotter, but it has to be warranted. I was feeling flat going into WrestleMania 17, because I’d been hot for so long and I’ve always liked to be the bad guy anyway. So, that’s why I wanted to turn into the bad guy, so I could have fun. But, people didn’t like it.”

Check out the complete Steve Austin interview from The Dan Patrick Show below.

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