In a recent candid conversation on Dr. Beau Hightower's YouTube channel, Olympic gold medalist and professional wrestling icon, Kurt Angle, divulged details about pivotal moments that could have drastically changed the trajectory of his illustrious career.
Renowned for his achievements both in the Olympics and within the squared circle, Angle's journey to WWE fame wasn't always clear-cut. In the aftermath of his 1996 Olympic triumph, Angle found himself at a crossroads. He recalls, "UFC approached me.
This was pre-Dana White era, and the sport felt a tad more raw and unrefined." The UFC proposition would have had Angle commit to ten fights for a sum of $150,000. For Angle, who had not mapped out his post-Olympic journey, the offer was not enticing enough.
Despite the uncertainty, one thing was clear to Angle: he was initially hesitant about diving into professional wrestling. The reason? He grew up with a familial skepticism towards the scripted world of pro wrestling. Given his athletic pedigree, his family viewed him as a genuine athlete, a "real deal." As Angle put it, "I wasn't a fan growing up, and when WWE's first substantial offer came my way, I was taken aback."
Angle's Unexpected WWE Journey
Recounting his early interactions with WWE, Angle shared a pivotal meeting with the company's head honcho, Vince McMahon.
"After our meeting in Connecticut, I brought the contract back to Pittsburgh, excitedly handing it over to my agent. To my surprise, he dismissed it outright." Angle's agent, mirroring his initial sentiments, was not keen on the world of pro wrestling.
However, destiny had other plans. After a short-lived stint in sportscasting, which Angle candidly describes as "an abysmal experience," he found himself drawn to WWE. The charismatic "Stone Cold" Steve Austin piqued his interest.
Reaching out to WWE once more, the initial contract was off the table, but they were open to a tryout. Needless to say, the rest is history. Today, as a WWE Hall of Famer, Angle's decision to embrace professional wrestling has solidified his status as one of the sport's true legends.