It is arguably the most iconic promo in sports entertainment. Stone Cold Steve Austin launched himself into the pro wrestling stratosphere with an iconic speech that destroyed Jake “The Snake” Roberts.
And in doing so, he made Austin 3:16 synonymous with the WWE Hall of Famer and legend.
So, on March 16 — yes, 3/16 — we celebrate Austin cutting the ultimate promo at WWE King of the Ring as Dok Hendrix — aka Michael Hayes — stood there, um, stunned.
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The actual Pay-Per-View event took place on June 23, 1996 at Milwaukee’s MECCA Arena.
And pro wrestling was never the same:
[Dok Hendrix:] The fourth prestigious King Of The Ring, Stone Cold Steve Austin, an incredible victory!
[Austin:] The first thing I want to be done, is to get that piece of crap out of my ring. Don’t just get him out of the ring, get him out of the WWF because I’ve proved son, without a shadow of a doubt, you ain’t got what it takes anymore! You sit there and you thump your Bible, and you say your prayers, and it didn’t get you anywhere. Talk about your psalms, talk about John 3:16…
Austin 3:16 says I just whipped your ass!
[Hendrix:] Come on, that’s not necessary
[Austin:] All he’s gotta do is go buy him a cheap bottle of Thunderbird and try to dig back some of that courage he had in his prime.
As the King Of The Ring, I’m serving notice to every one of the WWF superstars. I don’t give a damn what they are, they’re all on the list, and that’s Stone Cold’s list, and I’m fixing to start running through all of ’em.
And as far as this championship match is considered son, I don’t give a damn if it’s Davey Boy Smith or Shawn Michaels, Steve Austin’s time is come, and when I get that shot you’re looking at the next WWF Champion.
And that’s the bottom line, because Stone Cold said so.