WWE Legend Billy Gunn Reflects on New Age Outlaws Name Reaction

Billy Gunn discusses origin of team name.

by Noman Rasool
WWE Legend Billy Gunn Reflects on New Age Outlaws Name Reaction
© WWE/YouTube

One of the most revered tag teams in wrestling history, The New Age Outlaws helped define WWE during its electrifying Attitude Era. The WWE Tag Team Championships were a staple of their high time, and they won them five times while earning praise for their charming antics in front of the crowd.

They even won the titles again in 2014, proving their legendary teamwork hadn't waned. With all the success The New Age Outlaws acheived, one interesting question still remains to fans - who named them in their tag team partnership as The New Age Outlaws? This was a long-lasting mystery that Billy Gunn revealed the answer to during an excerpt on Chris Van Vliet's "Insight" podcast.

"Vince Russo, maybe," Gunn guessed. As he remembered the time when his name was first told and reflected on it. Brian [Road Dogg] was in a singles match wrestling and I sat there doing commentary. All of a sudden, JR throws this name at me; 'So I heard you guys are calling yourselves the New Age Outlaws.

I remember thinking it was the stupidest name ever and I said "for f--k sake do not say that again" Name Change Revealed The name is stuck in a process that is practically its own story. Sitting there, disapproving of the name as he was wont to do, Gunn suddenly got an order.

And Vince [McMahon] buzzes me in my ear, going, 'Oh hey that's your new name.' "Here we're New Age Outlaws just like that," said Gunn. It was revealed during a broadcast of "WWF Raw Is War" on December 15, 1997. Gunn was on commentary for Road Dogg vs Dude Love.

When the show was filmed, the editors showed a different take on what Gunn's response might have been. The edited version made it seem like Gunn was excited to call his Suicide Squad sequel The Dirty Dozen himself and that he thought of the clever moniker.

In WWE, the spontaneity of wrestling entertainment is further emphasized in this behind-the-scenes anecdote-which also proves how one name that was almost dismissed instantly became a lasting influence. The New Age Outlaws are hailed today as one of the most memorable tag teams in wrestling history, and even their name leaves you with thoughts on an era that says what everything meant to WWE for a generation.

Billy Gunn