In a heart-wrenching revelation, WWE legend Kurt Angle recently opened up about a deeply personal and tragic moment in his career. On the September 16, 2003 episode of WWE SmackDown, Angle faced off against Brock Lesnar in a historic “60-minute Ironman Match” for the WWE Championship. Little did the world know, Angle had received devastating news just hours before this monumental clash.
Angle’s world was shattered when he received a phone call from his brother on the eve of the match, informing him that his sister had tragically passed away due to a heroin overdose. The wrestling icon, faced with an unimaginable emotional burden, recounted this heart-wrenching moment, saying, “And it crushed me.”
“There was one point in my career where my brother called me. I was at a house show and it was the night before I was going to have the biggest match of my career with Brock Lesnar the next day. An Ironman match on SmackDown. My brother calls me and says, Hey, your sister just died of a heroin overdose. And it crushed me.”
What followed was a chilling account of Angle’s struggle to cope with the news. Alone in a hotel room, he made a fateful decision, consuming a staggering 20 pills in an attempt to numb the pain. He vividly recalled, “I didn’t wake up till 5 O’clock in the afternoon the next day, and I had the biggest match of my career.”
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“So, here I am in a hotel room. I looked at my pills, I said, ‘Fu*k it!’ I took 20 of ’em, put ’em in my mouth. I didn’t wake up till 5 O’clock in the afternoon the next day, and I had the biggest match of my career. We had to be there at 1 but I didn’t get there till 5:30. I ended up doing it. The WWE was trying to calm me the whole time. ‘You can go home, plan the funeral for your sister, you don’t have to do this match.”
Despite the immense personal turmoil he was enduring, Angle managed to make it to the match, albeit hours late. The WWE, understanding the gravity of the situation, offered to let him go home and begin planning his sister’s funeral. However, Angle made a remarkable decision to go ahead with the match, showcasing the incredible dedication and resilience that defined his career.
In an astounding display of both physical and emotional strength, Angle and Lesnar delivered an unforgettable performance that night. The Ironman match concluded with Lesnar in the lead, 5-4, over Angle. It was a testament to Angle’s unwavering commitment to his craft, even in the darkest of times.
Kurt Angle’s journey is one of triumph over personal demons, addiction, and adversity. His courage in facing the ring that night, despite the immense grief he carried, is a testament to his status as a wrestling legend. Angle was eventually inducted into the WWE Hall of Fame in 2017, a fitting recognition of his immense contributions to the world of professional wrestling.
In a world where sports entertainment often blurs the lines between fiction and reality, Kurt Angle’s story serves as a poignant reminder of the real-life struggles and sacrifices that lie beneath the glitz and glamour of the wrestling world.