Aside from a brief appearance in a magnificent montage, "Stone Cold" Steve Austin was absent from the historic 1,000th episode of WWE RAW.
Prior to the momentous night, the weren't many reports about whether Austin would be joining his former colleagues in St. Louis on Monday night, but wrestling fans all over the world got their answer when the legend did not make an appearance.
According to NoDQ.com, Austin had other obligations:
There is still no word on whether or not Steve Austin will be appearing on the 1,000th RAW episode. A source says that if Austin can get away from filming Grown Ups 2 then he may appear on RAW but when the date was first announced and brought up to him, there was a conflict.
Grown Ups 2? If that is indeed true, one of the most iconic stars in the history of professional wrestling missed out on RAW's biggest night to film Grown Ups 2. I don't think that needs to be said twice.
Talk about not having your priorities straight.
The fans of the WWE and the organization itself were responsible for providing the launching pad that propelled Austin to worldwide fame. Instead of carrying on his identity as a crowd-pleasing performer, he decided that it was more important to spend some time with Adam Sandler.
Grown Ups, the original, wasn't even that good. And by "wasn't even that good," I mean that I would have rather spent two hours listening to Damien Sandow babble on about whatever topic of his choosing than subject myself to that movie one more time.
We got to see Triple H, Shawn Michaels, Undertaker, The Rock, Bret Hart, Dude Love, John Layfield, Vader, Diamond Dallas Page and so many more, but it didn't feel right without the former "Sheriff" of Monday Night RAW.
Monday's episode was essentially a reunion of some of the greatest wrestlers the WWE has ever seen.
If the NBA gathered their greatest players in one place, Michael Jordan would not be filming Space Jam 2. He would be in his rightful place amongst the sport's greatest players.
Dan Marino would not skip out on a similar gathering to join Jim Carrey on the set of Ace Ventura: Pet Detective.
Who is to blame for Steve Austin's absence?
Keith Hernandez would not be caught filming an episode of Seinfeld if the New York Mets held a reunion for the best players in team history.
"The Texas Rattlesnake" helped make RAW into a sports entertainment empire. Without his efforts, it would not be operating on the scale that it is today.
Whether it was because Austin truly felt a stronger allegiance to Sandler and the rest of the Grown Ups 2 cast, or because the WWE did not extend the monetary compensation for his participation in the show, the fans missed out on a man who should have been at the 1,000th episode of RAW.
Update: Stone Cold came out on his website, Broken Skull Ranch, and said he is recovering from knee surgery.