Steve Austin held the record for the highest number of entries in the main event of pay-per-view events of the same year (twelve in 2001), a record he shared with The Rock (twelve in 2000). In 2003, during the celebratory episode of Raw's tenth anniversary, he was elected "the greatest Superstar of Raw's first decade" and received the Best Raw moment award for overwhelming his Corporation (Vince and Shane McMahon and The Rock) with a hydrant that threw beer.
During an interview with Bleacher Report, he spoke about his retirement: “They always ask me, ‘Do you miss it?’ No, man, because it’s been so long now that … I mean, I have to be over it now.
But there is a small part of me, even though I don’t live in the past, that says, ‘Man, when you’re 38 years old, man, in wrestling, you’re really in your prime.’ All of the learning that I’d done, working angles, talking promos, psychology with the crowd.
You’re really honed up at that age. And so to walk away from the table at seemingly a prime-time age was very, very tough for me to do, at many levels. I spent a lot of time hunting, fishing and drinking. Just trying to deal with it.
… To walk away from the business was hard. I was talking to Dale Earnhardt Jr. last year on my show on USA Network, about how all the concussions caught up with him, he had to pull his own plug. A doctor wasn’t going to tell him, ‘Hey, you need to quit."