He’s one of the industry’s most recognizable stars and was once known as the “franchise of WCW.” Whether he was sporting a blonde flattop while taking on the Four Horsemen or wearing a black trench coat, swinging a bat to fend off the nWo, Sting has been nothing short of iconic.
Fans wondered if they would ever see the day when Sting would wrestle inside a WWE ring. For 14 long years they waited to see it happen. It finally came to fruition at WrestleMania last year, but “The Icon” isn’t finished piling up the legendary moments and accolades.
Sting, a man who has held more championships than today’s superstars could ever hope for, has one more mountain to conquer. His crowning achievement comes next week as he’s officially inducted into the WWE Hall of Fame.
Before he takes his rightful place in sports entertainment history, Sting discussed his most memorable moments, what he misses, his WWE run, dream opponents and how he wants to be remembered.
The moment his career took off
CraveOnline: Even though you debuted in Memphis with Warrior, when do you think your career really took off?
Sting: It definitely wasn’t then [laughs]. Channel 5, Memphis, Tennessee with Lance Russell, oh man, what a horrible match. Leading up to that point when I did a storyline with Ric Flair. Just six months prior to that, it seemed the crowd was getting behind me doing the “woo” thing. It seemed like wrestling fans were kind of getting with it. I was like ‘Okay. I got a chance.’ By the time I got in the ring with Ric [Flair] and that storyline took off and suddenly, I was in main event matches and I thought ‘Okay. This is good.’
From blonde flattop to “Crow” Sting
CraveOnline: Let’s talk about the transition from the blonde flattop to the “Crow” Sting gimmick. How did that come about for you?
Sting: Wrestling was changing so much. At the time, we had Kevin Nash and Scott Hall and they had jumped ship and made this real gritty black and white nWo video and I watched it and went “Oh. This is awesome!” At the same time, they were noticing a lot of the talent was going in with “Say your prayers and take your vitamins” coming out of Hulk and yellow tights and all and he was starting to get booed. Wrestling was changing and I knew I had to change too. I began to put my thinking cap on and one day I remember being in Casper, Wyoming with Eric Bischoff and Scott Hall. We were just having this conversation and Scott [Hall] was the one who came up with the idea. He was like, “Dude, why don’t you just put a black trench coat on and paint your face white?” I thought there might be something to that and that’s when the character changed.
“The camaraderie with the guys”
CraveOnline: You have wrestled for decades and all over the world. You’ve seen it all. What do you miss the most about the “old days?”
Sting: Some of the camaraderie with the guys. Everything was new and fresh and you had a good camaraderie with the guys on the road. Just being with the guys. That was always great. Also, when the storyline begins to click especially. In the early days, when it’s your first experience with a storyline clicking and you’re a part of it, of course it’s going to be good [laughs].
Most memorable matches and opponents
CraveOnline: Which match do you hang your hat on the most?
Sting: Probably the very first Clash of Champions with Ric Flair and the world title match in Baltimore at Great American Bash. The one against Hogan at Starrcade in 1997, after the big Crow buildup and all of that is another. Those three matches standout but I have to say the very first one with Ric [Flair] at Clash of Champions because that put me on the map.
Chops from the Nature Boy
CraveOnline: Are those chops from Flair pretty stiff?
Sting: They’re real for sure. Absolutely. When you’re wrestling him every night, there were times my chest looked like hamburger. It was all split open and bleeding every night. It was all good though.
The WrestleMania moment
CraveOnline: Last year when you made your in-ring debut at WrestleMania against Triple H, take us through what you were experiencing in that moment. What were the emotions you were feeling?
Sting: Lots of emotion. In WWE at WrestleMania for the first time, against Triple H, a top-notch opponent on the biggest wrestling platform in history, in California, man, there were all kinds of thoughts going through my head. You see your whole career leading up to that moment where you’re in a WWE ring on the biggest stage. It was just awesome.
“I can’t look back and say I made a mistake.”
CraveOnline: Experiencing that WrestleMania moment, did it make you wish you had come to WWE sooner?
Sting: I’m content with the way it worked out. I really am. I can’t look back and say I made a mistake. It’s only when I’m asked the question of what could have been and what would have been, does it come up because I don’t find myself doing that. It is what it is and I can’t complain. Having a WrestleMania match last year and WWE title match against Seth [Rollins] and now getting inducted into the Hall of Fame, I’m very content.
CraveOnline: I know you have made it very clear that Undertaker is the guy you’d most like to have a match with but is there anyone else that you wish you had faced but never got the chance to do it?
Sting: Andre the Giant comes to mind because I always had good matches against big guys. Andre from the past and I’m glad I got in there with Seth [Rollins]. Daniel Bryan would have been a good one and John Cena and Bray Wyatt as well. There are a few I would have loved to have been in the ring with.
“Dream match with Undertaker”
CraveOnline: Ideally, in a perfect world, how would you like to end your career? You’re not done, right?
Sting: I want that dream match with Undertaker. I’ve been outspoken about that. The whole world knows that I’ve always wanted to do that so it would be kind of cool to go out like that.
The Hall of Fame
CraveOnline: Now that you’re set to enter the WWE Hall of Fame, looking back on your career, how do you want to be remembered?
Sting: Man, I want to be remembered as the guy who tried not to think about himself, tried to make it good for everybody and consider the others around me in all of the storylines. Somebody who had a strong work ethic and tried hard to entertain and have fans say, ‘Oh yeah. He was that guy that turned to God.’ I want to be remembered for that too.
source: Crave Online
Sting vs Bray Wyatt would have been nice. Would love to see the build consist largely of them cutting promos on each other and some here and there segments involving Sting taking out the other Wyatt Family members with his trademark baseball bat. But WWE has largely cooled off The Wyatt steam so there’s barely if any fire left.
I think Sting will be remembered how he wants to be remembered as he should be.
Been seeing a lot of year long build comments for Taker vs Sting. Whatever leads to the match will get no problem from me. That said, I am against the year long build idea. That’s overdoing it. How can a year long build be done involving two part-time talents while maintaining interest in the match? Rock and Cena had a year long build to WM28. Over time, some lost interest because while Cena was on every week for the build, Rock was barely present and most of his segments were facebook messages or things of that nature. Both Taker and Sting will not be present every week or even most of the year to keep it going. Taker will not sent messages via social media like Rock did. Sting, maybe, maybe not. WWE wouldn’t be smart to air video packages every week that they are not there to keep the build going because it’s not enough to make up for them not being there. Now if the build began one year and resumed during the WWE’s build to the show in which the match is taking place, that’s logical.