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The History of Stone Cold's Championship Belt
By Phil Speer and WWF.com
Stone Cold Steve Austin is not the Corporate Champion and doesnt want to wear any Corporate Title.
When the Rattlesnake first became Federation Champion, after defeating Shawn Michaels at WrestleMania XIV, he obtained a title that was first purchased by Mr. McMahon. He wasnt happy.
Just after Fully Loaded: In Your House last July, Austin traded in what the owner calls the "official" Federation Championship and began carrying around his own custom-made gold. Austins title was much better suited for him, as it featured a skull and rattlesnake, and a whole lot of attitude!
He carried that championship proudly until September, when at Breakdown: In Your House Mr. McMahon used his "master plan" to get the championship away from Austin. That night, after Kane and the Undertaker simultaneously pinned the Rattlesnake, Mr. McMahon took the title hostage and ran toward his limo. Just before he got in and it drove away, he screamed at Austin, "You dont have it anymore, its mine!"
The following day, September 28 on the live RAW from Detroit, Michigan, the owner -- as Gorilla Monsoon would say -- added insult to injury. Mr. McMahon came out with the custom made gold.
"This was a championship belt that Stone Cold Steve Austin had made for himself," the owner said. "Look at it with the skull on it. Theres only one place that this championship belt is goingabove my fireplace on my mantle in one of my homes."
Then Mr. McMahon put the custom-made championship around his own waist and stood up on the second rope with both arms in the air, mocking Austin.
Later in the night, Austin attacked McMahon in the famous Zamboni incident and was arrested. While being led away by police, Austin promised, "I aint done with ya yet Vince. I aint done with ya, not yet but a longshot!"
No truer words have been spoken. In fact, the very next week, Austin attacked Mr. McMahon in the hospital (in an episode of RAW also featuring the debut of Mr. Socko). But as much as Austin antagonized Mr. McMahon, he wasnt able to recapture the title.
In October, the owner attempted in vein to get Austin to humble himself. He forced the Rattlesnake to
be the special referee in the match between Kane and the Undertaker to determine the new champion at
The following night on RAW, Austin took the owner hostagemaking him literally squeal like a pig with the infamous toy "Bang 3:16" pistol. So fearful was the owner that he sent Shane out to sign Austin to a new contractwith the stipulation that the Rattlesnake could not attack the owner unless sufficiently physically provoked. The contract guaranteed one shot at the Federation Championshipbut only one.
At Survivor Series, Austin was again unable to capture the title after being double crossed by Shane.
In a truly unforgettable match, Austin overcame months of difficulty and finally regained the title.
After months of struggle, it is understandable that Austin would not want to wear any "official" Federation Championship. The word "official," in any of its definitions, is not part of the Austin 3:16 Dictionary. Austin has always done things his way, and he wants to carry a title that represents that. Most importantly, he wants his title not Vinces!
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