WWE Hall Of Famer, Kurt Angle recently spoke with Chris Van Vliet about his career where he revealed he was originally going to be the Undisputed Champion.
The first Undisputed Champion in WWE, of course, ended up beating Chris Jericho, as he defeated The Rock and Steve Austin in the same night. But Angle revealed that the original plan was for him to have the title.
“Vince McMahon came to me two weeks prior to the tournament and said, “We’re gonna give you the strap, you’re going to be the Undisputed Champion.” I thought that was pretty cool considering the pool is Chris Jericho, The Rock and (Steve) Austin. Those three are amongst the very best of all time. So I knew, going into it that I was going to win.
“Then, five days before Vince gave me a call and said: “hey, I really want to give Jericho the title, I think he would benefit from this.” I agreed, if anybody needs it and would run with it, it’s Chris Jericho, so I was cool with that. I was very honored that Vince had enough respect for me to say, listen, we’re going to switch it.”
Angle then went on to discuss Jericho and how important he was to the company during that period, giving him major praise for his work.
“He wanted to get my feelings on it and I agreed. It put him right in the title picture and the main event. He was such an important factor in the company because he could make anybody look good. We used him wherever we needed him, he was one of our most important assets.”
If the above quotes are used, please H/T ProWrestling.com and credit Chris Van Vliet for the interview.