Although he may still have a great relationship with the company, Stone Cold Steve Austin isn't afraid to offer a little constructive criticism.
When it came to creative freedom, the WWE Hall Of Famer probably had the most of it back in his heyday with the company, where he always reigned as one of the top contenders for the WWE Championship. It seems like nowadays, however, the talent backstage doesn't have that same kind of freedom to express themselves.
Recently, Austin was a guest on Wade Keller’s PW Torch Livecast to recap the recent WWE Backlash pay-per-view (PPV) from last week.
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During his appearance, Austin commented on the lack of creative freedom WWE Superstars have today and compared it to what WWE talents had back in his day (quotes via IWNerd):
“You’re classified as an independent contractor, but back in the day you were a Pro Wrestler working for a Professional Wrestling company.
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"So it was a little like the Wild Wild West and you had so much creative freedom to go on a limb and get yourself over and the fact, I mean, it’s still live TV, but back in the day there was another place that you can go and now everyone is so micromanaged these days.
"The office has so much power over these guys and the office always has some power because they are the ones that are employing you and they’re the ones that can terminate you, but I just think that everyone is walking on eggshells, which I believe that as a total shoot.
"The office has so much power over these guys that they are telling them what to say and what to do”
“There were times from back in the day where you had all these guys in the ring at the same time, but you had guys looking at each other, looking each other in the face, pacing back and forth where you thought that anything can happen at any time, which was basically guys protecting their gimmick because there were many times that there was the same setup.
"I could have been in the ring with Triple H, Road Dogg, Billy Gunn, Undertaker, some dangerous elements out there with a bunch of alpha males where they would go at it at a drop of a second.
"You had to conduct business, but guys had to protect their gimmick by doing something so they don’t just stand around like a robot, someone under the control of the office telling them what to do, and they can’t be caught with a thumb up their a** so, again.
"Part of that goes back to the boys; the office does have a strong hand on that so it does feel different, it doesn’t feel as spontaneous”
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