Austin Comments on The Rock vs. Cena, the Post-9/11 SmackDown & More

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Austin on being part of the first big event after 9/11 (Smackdown in Houston on Sept. 13, 2001…..tied in with the news that Osama Bin Laden was killed): “Well, the first show back was an interesting day at the office just because that’s when Vince just said ‘Hey Steve, we need to go back to work. A lot of people are going to come down on us but we gotta get this thing moving again and go forward because that’s what you do.” There was just a lot going on there. A big gray cloud over all of us. Why this happened and how it happened and everything that went on. It was a little strange obviously. It was a weird period, that’s all I can say about it. It was a long time ago and it was a weird period, but you have to do what you have to do.”

Austin on Edge’s sudden retirement and similarities to Austin’s neck problems: “Well, I don’t know all the particulars about Edge’s health, but I guess it’s a neck problem. Spinal Stenosis, it means you ain’t gotta lot of room for your spinal cord to move. So that puts him in harms way by taking too many bumps or taking the wrong bump, so it’s a good decision he made. Sad day at the office for millions and millions of Edge fans and WWE fans.

“I remember a long time ago, when my good buddy “Mr. Wonderful” Paul Orndorff had to get out of the business and he looked at me…..Me and Paul were always straight shooters with each other and really good friends….and he goes ‘Steve, let me tell you something. There is life after wrestling.’ And there is, you just gotta go out there and find it and Edge will. He’s a bright kid, always has been, he’s still young, has got youth on his side, good looking kid and smart, so he’ll be fine. That’s just the way it is. When its time to close a door and open up another one, you gotta do that.”

Reaction to hearing WM 28 Main Event a year in advance and making it work: “They’re gonna have to make it work. It’s a hard build to make work. Rock’s hot and heavy right now in the movie business, he’s doing great…..and Cena is the number 1 guy, I’m sure he would love to work with a guy like Rock. When you got that big a window of time, it’s gotta work, and if anybody can make it work, it’s Vince. He always wants to do something big at every single Wrestlemania there is and that’s the big thing that he made was…..this next Wrestlemania. He’s a lot smarter than I am, so more power to him and good luck. I wish both guys well.”

On wrestlers having personality or lack thereof and if the guys in the back were upset that he showed his with the Stone Cold character: “To this day, they (creative) might give you something because they don’t think you can come up with anything better or they feel their idea might be better than yours. Vince is a businessman. He don’t want to sit there and make every single decision that’s gotta be made. At the corporate level that’s his job because he’s the leader of that ship….he’s the captain…’s his baby, but hell, he wants everyone to go out there.

“If John Cena, the number 1 guy in the business, goes up to Vince and goes ‘Vince, I got a damn good idea, this is how to make me better and more hotter than I already am’….Vince is gonna listen to him. If Joe Blow who’s jerking the curtain in the first match says ‘Vince, I got a hell of an idea that’s gonna make me a main eventer, Vince is gonna say ‘Let me hear it’. It ain’t about them labeling you anything and making you stick to it. You gotta come up with something…’s show business.”

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