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WWF Legend Reveals How Much Stone Cold Steve Austin Made From His ‘Austin 3:16’ Shirts In Just 1 Year

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Stone Cold Steve Austin’s famous ‘Austin 3:16’ shirt is one of the two most successful merchandise t-shirts in professional wrestling history, with the other being the nWo (new World order) shirt.

On a recent episode of his weekly ‘The Kurt Angle Show’ podcast, our Olympic Hero answered multiple fan questions, with one of them being about his favorite piece of merchandise.

Here’s what Kurt Angle replied:

“My favorite was what I sold the most. It was my ‘It’s True It’s True’ T-shirt. Red, White, and Blue. It’s True Its True. It was a great T-shirt.

I sold a lot of those. That was my rookie year. I never sold as many T-shirts the rest of my career as I did my first year.

I have to tell you this. It wasn’t that much money. I wasn’t a merchandise guy.

Even Vince McMahon came to me and said listen ‘We can’t use the word Olympics. We can’t use Olympic rings. You’re not going to do merchandise. I’m gonna pay you to wrestle’.

I was like ‘Well I do want to make money on merchandise’. He says ‘Can’t do it’. I had merchandise, but I didn’t have a lot.”

Kurt then spoke about how much his Attitude Era rival Stone Cold Steve Austin made from his merchandise:

“In one year, he made $12 million on merchandise and that was the 3:16 shirt. That’s when it came out. $12 Million.

He told me. I was like ‘Holy crap’. He only made two and a half million wrestling. Vince McMahon said ‘I pay you (Angle) to wrestle’.

Vince, I’m not gonna lie to you, he paid me well. I made more than Austin did with wrestling.

I didn’t make nearly as much as Austin did with merchandise, but Vince took care of me on the back end with wrestling.

Merchandise, I made, I’ll give you just roundabout figures, between 700 and 900 grand a year. It wasn’t a lot.

It’s a lot of money, don’t get me wrong, but not for being a big star like that.

For some reason Vince just told me ‘Hey, can’t do anything with you in merchandise, so just wrestle’.

I would come up with merchandise ideas and Vince would utilize them, but you know, I didn’t sell like Stone Cold, and I was a heel most of my career too.”

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