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Stone Cold Stunner

Someone recently made a video of a bunch of Stone Cold Stunners on Youtube. @Odor31 if this is your work, thank you. No telling how long it took to make this video. Anyway, many of you know how the Stunner was born…For those of you who don’t, here’s the skinny…
I guess the year was 1996. We were in Fayetteville, NC. at a Monday Night Raw. It was just a normal Monday. I was hanging around the arena killing time before the show started, minding my own business when Michael P.S. Hayes came up to me and said “Hey, Kid…You got a minute? I wanna show you something”. I said “Sure” and followed him to the ring. As we walked he started explaining to me that he had maybe come up with a better finishing move for me than the one I was using at the time. I had been using the Million Dollar Dream, H.O.F’er Ted DiBiase’s old finish that I had been given when I first came into WWF, with Ted as my manager. It had been a great finisher for Ted, and it was working well for me too, but I needed something a little more explosive that fit my personality. Michael explained that Johnny ‘Ace’ Laurinaitus had been using a version of the this finish in Japan with great success. Johnny had also shown his version of the finish to my buddy Diamond Dallas Page. DDP was starting to run roughshod in WCW with a helluva run and called his version of it the Diamond Cutter. The difference that Michael would show me was that instead of going flat, I would drop down on my ass, theoretically driving my shoulder into the opponent’s throat. We were assisted by several willing ‘volunteers’ that were around ringside. These guys let me experiment and get the hang of it. I was sold. This would be my new finish from that point on. When I first started using the Stunner as it would come to be named(I’m not sure who named it, maybe Jim Ross or someone in the office), I simply went into the maneuver without a set up. It was simply delivered with no anticipation. And I’m a little fuzzy on this, but I’m almost positive that Michael and I were talking about the move happening too fast, and that the crowd could not anticipate the action because it happened out of the blue. I needed some type of setup maneuver ala Jake “The Snake” Robert’s signature short arm clothesline that he delivered before unleashing one of the most devastating finishers of all time…The DDT. An easy, and quick solution to this was the kick to the gut, which perfectly set the victim into an effective ‘ready position’. Not only was the kick effective as a weapon to neutralize my opponent, it was also a visual ‘signal’ to the crowd that the Stunner was next…Or was it? Any kind of curveball could be worked into the equation at that point, but from a storytelling standpoint, the Stunner was ‘supposed’ to happen next.
For those of you who never saw Michael P.S. Hayes wrestle or cut a promo, you missed out on a cat who was wildly entertaining. Michael was the mouthpiece and leader of the Fabulous Freebirds. Bad ass bully and big man Terry ‘Bam Bam’ Gordy was the muscle and intimidator of the bunch. And Buddy Roberts was the heat seeking missile who everyone in the world thought that even ‘they’ could kick’s ass. I predict that the Fabulous Freebird’s will be in the Hall of Fame one day. They had a lasting impact on me and my career. I spent my hard earned money in Dallas, Texas paying for a ticket at the World Famous Sportatorium so I could watch the Freebird’s wrestle. Michael Hayes’ entrance alone was worth the price of the ticket. You either loved or hated the Freebird’s. There was no in between with these guys. And I don’t think Michael ever got enough credit for being an outstanding talker, personality, and entertainer.
So that’s what I remember. I received this video on my Twitter account(@steveaustinBSR) so I figured I would go down memory lane and tell this story. I would dare say that the Stone Cold Stunner was one of the most effective and devastating finishing maneuvers of all time. I think it is pointless to pick a “Number 1 Finisher” of all time. I think a Top 10 is fine, though. There were just so many Bad Ass finishers that evolved as time went on that would not even be considered as a ‘finish move’ in today’s game. The Vertical Suplex of Harley Race or the Iron Claw of Fritz Von Erich wouldn’t fly in todays game, but both were revered and feared by everyone in the business back in the day, and if you were on the receiving end of either one of the moves…You were done. Period. End of story…That’s it…Lights out…Sayonara…Goodbye…And that’s the bottom line…
Ah, but I digress…Where was I? Thanks to Michael Hayes for the finish. I’ll never forget that fateful day in Fayetteville, NC. And there is a hellacious number of guys and gals who were on the receiving end of a Stunner. I don’t know how many Stunners I’ve dealt out in my career. There were some nights when my back was so torched the last thing I wanted to do was jump up in the air and land on my ass…BUT…After getting beat like a drum for a good portion of my career, no matter how bad I was feeling…I NEVER B!TCHED ABOUT HAVING TO GIVE A STUNNER. The setup kick…The Stunner…The explosion from the fans in attendance…Damn what a way to make a living!! OH HELL YEAH!!!

Steve Austin

58 Responses to “Stone Cold Stunner”

  1. Daphne @daffy316 says:

    God Bless u Michael Hayes!

  2. jesse sauer says:

    Good history steve

  3. Joshua says:

    Should have just made a video of the people who have not been demolished by the Stone Cold Stunner. Would have been much shorter.

  4. CaptainMorgan says:

    KICK

    WHAM

    STUNNER

    Don’t know what the WHAM was for, but that was the best thing ever. Especially that Raw before Invasion, when Austin stunnered the hell out of anything that By God moved!

  5. d says:

    Only other finishers that could compete with this at the time? Superkick from Shawn michaels, Bret Hart sharpshooter, and of course a little later the peoples elbow. Second only to Vader’s powerbomb for the visual effect though. Give Hayes and Johnny Ace credit for the move, but it was the effect and delivery that sold that move, as well as thecharacter. Well played, and best wishes sir.

  6. Steve Muir says:

    Such a great compilation. This has got to be my favourite Stunner ever though… I was on the edge of my seat when I was watching this live (WrestleMania 14): http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SIIA_XHeEaI

    (Steve, not sure if you’re reading this, but if you are you’re one hell of a wrestler and my idol. Thanks for the many happy wrestling memories!)

  7. Joe says:

    Awesome read.

  8. Alex Maki (ODOR31) says:

    I made that video – glad it made its way to you!!!

  9. Rick Grant says:

    Hey Steve , what do you think of deer hunting with a ar-style rifle ?

  10. Daphne @daffy316 says:

    Not just anyone can deliver the stunner! You made the stunner what it is, steve! GREAT JOB!

  11. CaptainMorgan says:

    “The ‘Wham’ is the actual Stunner.”

    Ha never thought of it like that. Been bugging me for the best part of a decade too!

  12. Gigi Talley says:

    I always like finding out the background info. Thanks!

  13. Candy says:

    I’ve sat through that video twice and it really is amazing. God only knows how many Stunners you’ve delivered that didn’t get captured in those 23 minutes.

    It’s also great to see how different people sell the Stunner. I think my favorite was Scott Hall, but there’s a lot of other great ones.

  14. Jackeline Nuit says:

    you’re the MAN …… ”The explosion from the fans in attendance” Steve, everyday i think you deserve much better….

  15. Steve says:

    Alphabetical order?! Way to go man lol

  16. James Scott says:

    There’s nothing better than Steve Austin walking down that ramp and delivering some large stone cold stunners. As a fan it is the greatest move of all time and as you can see everytime the stunner is delivered the crowd simply love it. OH HELL YEAH

  17. Jimmy Arrans says:

    Damn!!!!!! That was awesome. I give mad props to the fan who made it. He did a great job and the Stone Cold Stunner is my favorite move in all of wrestling also love reading the story of how the stunner came to be. Thanks Stone Cold…..

  18. Jeremiah Wilkerson says:

    I’ve seen a clock already, how about metal antique BSR signs, BSR gym bags, and weight-lifting gloves?

  19. great video fro whom it came from. good wrestleing history story. i never new john laurinitis was using this finishing move. hope ur good steve and would be good to see you at WMANIA 28

  20. Thomas Taylor says:

    Just the best collection on stunners around. God bless 3:16. Love the site, love the post, and love that i can know more about my fav wrestler now that hes off the circuit then ever b4. Best Bumps: Mick, Rock, Vince, Shane-o-Mac, JBL, Eddie, and Beniot (RIP boys)… Worst: Linda, Steph, DLo, Taker, Kane, and Show….. I guess it was hard to stun the bigger guys….. But damn my ass hurts from watching that, i cant imagine how bad Steve’s felt.

  21. Ishu Jaiswal says:

    Austin u r my fav. wwe superstar of all time & stunner is my fav. finisher in wwe of all time……. HELL YEAH!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  22. Dawn V Johnson says:

    Oh Lawd, Matches with the Freebirds were some of my all time Favorites..Oh God Bless Michael..Always was a Hell of a Finish..Enjoyed the Blog as Always..Take Care..Dawn

  23. Alex Maki (ODOR31) says:

    The only person missing from my highlight video is Hogan. I heard there was at least one stunner delivered to him during a post-show RAW…I want WWE to post that footage!!

  24. Luke Baker says:

    Great insight to where the stunner was born.
    Thanks for sharing the story.

  25. cdf says:

    It’s great to read behind the scene history like this

  26. […] of a tweet and a blog post from living legend Stone Cold Steve Austin, I was turned onto the above video featuring nothing but […]

  27. MaverickPawn says:

    It can’t be coincidence that the history of the Stone Cold Stunner is told on this date. I’m not being insensitive when I say Stone Cold unleashed a tsunami of entertainment with that move. I miss those days of anticipating where and when a can of whoop ass would be opened and how many Stunners would come out.

  28. Trisha Greiffenstein says:

    I remember Michael PS Hayes! Didn’t like him at the time but thinking back he was a great in ring performer. In the past years have really come to admire his work. I was a fan HUGE fan of the Von Erichs back then so the Von Erich claw would send me into a jumping frenzy as the Stunner would do later. Thanks for the entertain over the years. Its really good to relive some of those moments on You Tube. The blogs on how it all came to be are awesome. Have a great sunday Steve. From an extremely wet Brenham TX!! LOL

  29. Trisha Greiffenstein says:

    ENTERTAINMENT! Proof read Trish, Proof read

  30. David Hanmer says:

    The best finishing move of all time…

  31. gareth says:

    if you cud pick someone who was the best person you have stunned

  32. gareth says:

    i think its been far too long since we seen a stunner on raw

  33. Don says:

    I think my favorite stunner, and I dont know why, as there were so many, was when you stunned all four McMahons, and the one you gave to Shane. It was just classic, the way he danced out, came to the ring, gets in , and you just walk right up , and bam! stunner. It was just priceless

  34. steve reynolds says:

    Great video
    Michael ps Hayes was awesome,I saw a lot of him on wccw,nwa(crockett promotions), I think alittle awa if my memory doesn’t fail me from drinking 316 stevewisers last night.greatest day of my life wrestlemania in Seattle but next night on raw my favorite of all time is done.Thanks for all the memorys and a special Thanks to the gentlemen Chris adams for helping stunning steve austin

  35. Francisco Junior says:

    the stunner is so stunning. Now i know the wham is the stunner enfasis. HELL YEAH!

  36. Charlie J. says:

    ol jerry brisco would do a friggin flip flop haha! billy gunn took it good but none better then the rock …can u tell me who all put the stunner on u.

  37. Adam Jacoby says:

    Stone Cold Steve Austin is my favorite wrestler of all time. His attitude and personality are just like mine and I loved watching every second of him kicking ass and delievering “Stunners”. There will never be another Texas Rattlesnake or Good ol Redneck that I love watching more. Some of my best times spent in college were Monday Nights watching Stone Cold Kick Ass and then acting it out with my buddies. My girlfriend thought I was nuts and she was right. I was nuts about Stone Cold Steve Austin. Thank you for so many awesome years Steve. I wish it never had to end. I would love to drink a beer (who am I kidding?, a beer, that means only one and we know it wouldn’t stop there) with you and go hunting at the ranch. Hey, a man can dream right?

  38. […] Cold” Steve Austin updated his blog at BrokenSkullRanch.com on Sunday. In the blog the former WWE World Heavyweight Champion recalled a scenario about how the […]

  39. Shellcoder says:

    Great move…that’s the best finishing maneuver by the best wrestler WWE ever have had

  40. […] In his latest BrokenSkullRanch.com blog update, Steve Austin discusses the origins of the […]

  41. Scsacrazy1 says:

    :) Nice

  42. JD says:

    Every time he would hit a Stunner, Jerry or J.R. would yell “STUNNER!” and then J.R. would use one of his famous catchphrases, such as “BAH GAWD, HE MIGHT BE BROKEN IN HALF!” or “DEAR GAWD, STONE COLD HAS JUST HIT A STUNNER!” or possibly even “MAH GAWD, A STUNNER! WHAT A SLOBBERKNOCKER! BAH GAWD, BAH GAWD, HE MIGHT BE BROKEN IN HALF! GOOD GOD ALMIGHTY!”

  43. Stone cold fan says:

    thanks to Michael P.S. Hays for Awesome Finisher now I just hope Stone Cold is the special REF for the Rock and Cena match at WM-28!

  44. Finally got a chance to watch Recoil yesterday. Great movie and good to see you keeping on top of the Stunner.

  45. Brian says:

    DAMN!!!! I miss thos days!!!!!!

  46. Eric Burrow says:

    24 min of stunners! Forgot about that abortion of a Trump bumb…hell maye and linda put that to shame. Best all time was the one vs HBK in Boston ’98, the jump timing and landing were perfect and HBK’s recoil wasn’t comedy or overdramatic, it looked devasting and serious and was exactly what the most important stunner in history should look like. Great stuff!

  47. Manuel says:

    Great history but i have a question Would you have liked to come and bring the hell to Mexico with the WWE ?

  48. claudio says:

    Really cool story, Steve!!

  49. satish says:

    thnx for revealing the history, u r the most memorable person of my school days. I want to see u again in the ring steve!!!!

  50. snugglebear8 says:

    Badass! The Stunner fits ya like a glove Steve Austin! You are my favorite! I love your badass attitude!! YAY!
    I love the history too!! <3 <3 <3

  51. James Cagle says:

    Hey Steve, i have been wondering how the “Stone Cold Stunner” came about. That move is the best finishing move around. The way you started “stunnin” everyone and the hit Vince with one is hilarious, watchin him shake and shiver after that stunner. Steve Austin rules the WWE history books. I watched recoil yesterday….and i was thinking, they should want him to hit a stunner in one of the action flicks. Hope all is well at Thebrokenskullranch.com. James

  52. Brandon R says:

    Micheal P.S hays is where the stunner came from, suprised your on this site and dont know that

  53. troy says:

    The SC Stunner was as much a part of the stone cold character as is the breaking glass with music, the vest, the bald head and the attitude. The million dollar dream, while a great hold, did not have the impact of the stunner for the character. It was a random, quick hit with devatating look on camera and in an arena. It worked for your charater.

    As for Micheal Hayes, I saw the Freebirds in Atlanta before they went on to World Class. They had “it”, they got “it” and they were, in my opinon, just as innovative as the Road Warriors were for the time, just different. Micheal Hayes was just as entertaining as Dusty Rhodes was and his mea culpa that he did when Bam Bam left (for a brief time) to tag with Snuka was and is just as good a promo as “Hard Times” by Dusty (IMHO). It’s ashame that a lot of the really good stuff from pre Black Saturday days is either lost or not being released for whatever reason, whether it be because the powers that be destroyed, lost it or held it up. (who could forget the 13 piledrivers by the Freebirds on Ted Debiase on the studio floor? Now that was some heat)

  54. Your da greatest and thats da bottom line cuz u said so

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