A "Stone Cold" slap in the face
There are few moments in WrestleMania history more infamous than when "Stone Cold" Steve Austin betrayed The Rock and the entire WWE Universe by aligning himself with his mortal enemy, Mr. McMahon, at WrestleMania X-Seven. This truly stunning moment comes in at No. 4 on the Hardest Hitting Betrayals edition of List This! presented by "Body of Lies."
It's a feud as legendary as God vs. the Devil. "The Rattlesnake" and the Chairman brutally ushered in the Attitude Era, creating their own personal Monday night war. Fans couldn't get enough of the working class Superstar who made it his mission to turn his rich boss' life into a living hell. And, with every screaming threat, "Stone Cold" Stunner, sneak attack, hospital ambush and unwelcome beer truck assault, their rivalry grew more and more intense -- as Austin became a hero to millions.
WrestleMania X-Seven's main event had the makings of an incredible match. It pitted a fan-favorite against another fan-favorite as Austin took on The Rock for the WWE Championship. Both Superstars were at the top of their game and were adored by the masses. And, since the match was no disqualification, it seemed certain that the true champion would be standing by night's end.
However, in WWE anything can happen. Without warning and to the horror of the WWE Universe, Mr. McMahon suddenly interfered on behalf of his long time nemesis. The Chairman's surprise assistance allowed Austin to grab a steel chair and ruthlessly tear apart the champion before walking away with the WWE Championship.
When the smoke cleared, the dark betrayal was solidified as Austin and Mr. McMahon shook hands, making it apparent that two of the bitterest enemies in WWE history had in fact formed an unholy union.
This shocking moment was a true act of betrayal against WWE fans everywhere, forged in WrestleMania glory. Above all, it was proved in 2001 that there is one thing that will bring a billionaire and a rebellious Superstar together … gold.