Angle made his first appearance at a professional wrestling event in 1996 with his in-ring debut following in 1998. He signed a contract with the WWE that same year and participated in his first televised storyline in March 1999.
Angle was a six-time world champion (four reigns as WWF/WWE Champion, one as WCW Champion and one as WWE’s World Heavyweight Champion), a one-time United States Champion, one-time Intercontinental Champion, one-time European Champion, one-time Hardcore Champion and one-time WWE Tag Team Champion. He left WWE in 2006 but returned in 2017 to be inducted into the WWE Hall of Fame.
“Austin is the reason I got into the business. I fell in love with him in 1998. I wanted to be him. I wanted to be like him. I loved his character. When I decided to join WWE, my idea was being another Stone Cold Steve Austin. Little did I know I was going to be the complete opposite. I was going to be a nerdy heel, Olympic gold medalist that talked about the three I’s and stupid sh*t. It was a dream come true to actually wrestle Austin for the first time. It was a very little time into my career that I actually got to wrestle him. I didn’t expect to wrestle him this quickly, but it was awesome. I really enjoyed it. He’s an excellent worker. His character is so strong that people under appreciate his in-ring ability. Austin is the beer drinker, flip off your boss, beat your boss up, rebel, and fans took to that very quickly, but his in-ring skills were just as good.”