Sitting across from Steve Austin, using a towel to hide each swig of beer he took, Big Show pulled no punches as he talked about his long career.

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Openness and unfiltered honesty powered Big Show"s podcast interview (warning: NSFW language) on the WWE Network after Monday"s Raw. The World"s Largest Athlete recalled the toxic environment that was the WCW locker room, criticized how WWE has booked him and revealed when he plans to hang up his immense boots for good. 

WWE officials had to be seething as Big Show let a good number of expletives slip and freely fired off his thoughts on camera.


Thanks to his candor and chemistry with Austin, this was an engaging interview from start to finish. Jason Solomon of PWMania is among those who believe it was Austin"s best podcast yet:


Jason Solomon
solomonster

That last hour of #Raw would've been infinitely better if they would've just aired the Stone Cold Podcast with Big Show. Best one yet!


During the course of Big Show"s storytelling, he pulled back the curtains to let us get a good look behind the scenes at both WCW and WWE and at his past, present and future.



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Influences, Mentors

A myriad of hands and minds had a part in shaping Big Show. He told Austin about all the veterans who showed him the finer points of the mat game.

Triple H and Terry Taylor first trained the big man. Triple H apparently jokes that Big Show shouldn"t tell people he trained him, though.

He also credited Undertaker with being instrumental to his success. 

The Deadman was a mentor and a coach to him, always in his ear, pushing him to be better. Big Show said that Undertaker was hard on him but "poured so much knowledge into me."


WWE Network
WWENetwork

"Sometimes I'd walk to the back and he'd be there waitin' on me..." -
WWETheBigShow on #Undertaker #StoneColdPodcast https://t.co/VFEUbKmkXD


Austin aided Big Show once he arrived on the WWE stage, too. 

The two worked together during a tour of Europe. At first, Austin beat on him, dominating the matches. Eventually, he learned to play the role of giant better. That meant not selling his opponent"s offense as much, as well as being more aggressive. 

Big Show remembered one night where Austin gave him seven stunners, and the crowd grew louder each time. It was an eye-opening moment, as Stone Cold showed off his mastery of working the audience. 


Hulk Hogan was clearly vital to Big Show"s rise. His name"s popping up on WWE programming was one of the more surprising elements of the night.

Hulkster Not Erased

Last year, when Hogan"s racially charged rant (contains edited NSFW language) leaked, WWE swiftly distanced itself from him. It fired him from WWE Tough Enough. It wiped him from WWE.com and video packages on TV. 

Either WWE is softening its stance, or Big Show angered everyone in charge on Monday night. He brought up Hogan a ton.



Hulk HoganThearon W. Henderson/Getty Images

The World"s Largest Athlete remembered Hogan telling him early in his career that he would be better off going to WWE. The Hulkster told him McMahon would make him a star.

Big Show told an embarrassing anecdote where Hogan told him to wear his world title as he made his way through airport security. The big man proudly displayed his gold as other wrestlers mockingly called him "champ." Austin later revealed that wearing a championship out like this is a big faux pas in the business. 

Remembering how Hogan first helped get him into the business and vouched for him, Big Show had plenty to say about The Hulkster. Hogan"s name was mentioned more in this interview than it has been on WWE TV and WWE.com in the last year.

Maybe that"s just a result of enough time passing since word of Hogan"s controversial tirade emerged. Or maybe Big Show can do what he wants at this point.

It"s not as if one can tell the Big Show story without including Hogan.


WCW vs. WWE 

The stories about the backstage atmosphere as WCW reached his apex and soon came crashing down never get old. And Big Show had plenty of them.

When he first started working for the company, the vibe was relaxed. Big Show described a scene where wrestlers played gin and dominoes. Things were easy back then.

That was even true with WCW thrusting him onto center stage.



Big Show during his WCW days.Credit: WWE.com

He won the world title in his first match, dethroning Hogan in the process. Suddenly, a rookie was forced to be one of the faces of the promotion.

Of the pressure he felt as champion, Big Show said he had "no idea how to handle it."

That was nothing compared to how things would change during the Monday Night Wars. Scott Hall and Kevin Nash arrived, birthed the New World Order and transformed the company. Big Show talked of how panicked his peers were then.

No wanted to be a babyface opposite those guys. They were too cool, too popular.

The big man said it felt like no one was really in charge. He described the environment as "vicious dogs snapping in a corner."


WWE
WWE

Coming from WCW, why was
WWE so intimidating for
WWETheBigShow? #StoneColdPodcast https://t.co/nZvm2H2WWp


WWE was different. Big Show said things were more professional. Wrestlers were hungrier, as everyone looked to outdo each other and put on the best match of the night.

Still, Big Show was no company man in the interview. When Austin asked him how he felt about how WWE has used him, he said the booking has been "horrendous."

Too often, the company went for the fast fix rather than the best one. He attributes his constant flip-flopping from babyface to heel to that approach. He knows full well WWE has switched him back and forth too often.


"I"ve had more turns than NASCAR," he told Austin. 

On Retirement

Big Show isn"t done yet.

He is still enjoying being in the ring, even though he said he has done all he can do in terms of championships. "I have fun every day I go to work," he said.

While he said he"s not retiring anytime soon, he told Austin that he thinks he has two years left in him.

People chanting "Please retire!" at him clearly doesn"t bother him. He laughed at the mention of those chants. He said that the people who say that to him "don"t understand what the product"s about."

Big Show says he"s committed to helping the next crop of stars, whether that means losing to someone or helping them out with advice. He talked of working with younger guys to improve their timing, presence and attitude.

If that"s the case, that only ups Big Show"s value. WWE is getting a player-coach of sorts.

And fans don"t need to worry about him pushing to win the Royal Rumble or grab more gold. He said he doesn"t care about accolades, that he instead simply wants to be known as someone who loved the business.

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