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WWE: Vince McMahon Discusses Austin, Bret and Hogan

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posted on Jun, 3 2004 @ 03:10 PM
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The biggest WWE star ever might be Stone Cold Steve Austin. His contract expired, why isn't he on your roster?

Vince McMahon basically said that it was Austin's decision. Austin can't physically compete and everyone has known that for a while. Vince also said that Austin doesn't like to be thought of less than what he was. Austin wants the rights to use the name Stone Cold. Vince goes on saying that when you're a contracted performer, you have certain rights. He said Steve owns the name Steve Austin, but doesn't own Stone Cold. It's important for Vince to protect the WWE's intellectual property.

Rock was given rights to his name, why can't Stone Cold?

Vince McMahon corrects him and says that The Rock does not own the name "The Rock." The WWE gave Rock a license to use the name "The Rock" for Hollywood. Michael Landsberg asked Vince if Austin made him more money than anyone. Vince McMahon said yes. Austin certainly contributed to the WWE, but Austin got a lot of help. Many superstars helped him get there. Vince said that even Austin would admit that.

You have to respond to the public to a certain extent. When the public says where is Stone Cold, how does Vince respond?

Vince says they don't say that. The fans don't want the Stone Cold now, who can't perform. Austin's physical limitations is one of the reasons why he isn't on the roster. Vince said that he gave Austin a tremendous offer, but it was all Austin's decision. He said Austin walked out twice on the company and he was forgiven twice. It did hurt the company when he left. He left everyone hanging and Steve recognized the errors he made. He said Stone Cold Steve Austin, the wrestler we knew is done. He can't do what he use to do, but he will always have value. He said Austin might be back some day, the door is always open.

Can Austin succeed in another world, like the Rock did in Hollywood?

Vince said "Not necessarily like The Rock." In a way he can't be The Rock, he was never The Rock. But if Steve crosses over to Hollywood with the right script, he thinks he can succeed.

Does Vince deal with Austin alone or his lawyers and team?

Vince prefers dealing with the talent alone. Vince doesn't like when an attorney that knows nothing about the wrestling business starts making demands for his client. That was the case with Austin's attorney, Vince didn't get along with him.

Vince has a great roster, huge representation of Canadians. Someone tunes in and hears "Chris Benoit from Atlanta." He gets upset. What's the reason for the location switch?

Vince said that when Chris Benoit became champion, he'd been living in Atlanta for ten years. Michael Landsberg interrupts and says that he only lives there because it's convenient for him, but he's from Canada.

Vince McMahon said that it's a way to increase their popularity in the United States.

Landsberg asks: "Then why is Christian from Toronto?"

Vince said that Christian is a heel. There is a bias in the States and same goes in Canada.

Landsberg asked if all that started from the Hart Foundation storyline in 1997? Landsberg points out the fact that Bret Hart's favorite/greatest time of his life was in 1997 with the Hart Foundation. Vince said that a lot of baby face Americans are heels in Canada.

Topic switches to Bret Hart.

Landsberg asked Vince about the meeting Vince had with Bret. Vince said that Bret was an hour late for the meeting. Vince and Shane McMahon had met with Bret. Bret was watching the Calgary Flames' hockey game, which was the reason he was an hour late. Vince said that he and Shane were also watching the game, but they didn't tell that to Bret. Vince was close with Bret and still wants to think they are.

Landsberg pointed out that Bret hated Vince at one point.

Vince said that it was an unfortunate time in Vince's life. Vince wants to apologize but can't because he thinks he might do it again if it came to the same situation.

Reason of the meeting? Bret Hart DVD.. One-night return?

Vince said that a one-night Bret Hart return would be something they want do. He and Bret discussed a possible DVD, which was one of the main reasons for the meeting.

Landsberg said that Bret's popularity in this country is amazing and he's a Canadian hero. Vince McMahon agrees. Landsberg was happy to hear that because a few years back, Vince said that Bret was a WWF hero, not a Canadian hero and Landsberg and Vince started arguing about it. But now, Vince admits that Bret is a Canadian hero.

Has Vince changed? Is it important for Vince to be taken seriously?

He thinks it's important to be taken seriously as an entertainment company. He thinks yes, from a serious standpoint, it's a serious business, but it's a fun business.

Does it bother Vince that because it's wrestling, people don't give it its due?

Yes it does. Every opportunity he has he tries to correct it. Their goal is to be as good as they can be.

How's Vince's health?

Vince is in great shape. Body building is Vince's hobby and always has been.

How would the WWE survive without him?

He said it would survive because of his son Shane, his daughter, Stephanie and his son in law, HHH.

Let's say Vince leaves, who would he put in charge?

He said there would be at least two people doing his job. He said that he fills many hats... He'd put one person to have the final say for the creative team, etc...

what would HHH's position be?

Vince said that HHH is bright. He can have enormous contributions. Then he talks about Stephanie and says that when Steph became in charge of the creative team, he wasn't too sure about it at first, but she adapated.

Michael Landsberg said that Vince's show brought a lot to his show. His stars are always there to accept interviews for Off The Record and he thanks him for helping his show. Vince also thanks him.

How's Vince's relationship with Goldberg?

"Good."

How's Vince's relationship with Hulk Hogan?

"Good." Vince said that Hogan had left

Vince a message with someone saying that he's in good shape. Hogan felt better than he has ever felt. Also that he's had a successful hip surgery and is ready to come back. Landsberg jokes and asks if Hogan's message was slow, the way he wrestles, and he starts laughing.

Recap of Vince McMahon on TSN's Off The Record




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