Kurt Angle sometimes wore multiple medals around his neck during his WWE run and he has explained that it was because Vince McMahon thought it fit the character perfectly.
Anybody that watched Angle’s incredible first run in WWE from his debut at Survivor Series 1999 until his departure in the summer of 2006 knows that Angle won an Olympic Gold medal for freestyle at the 1996 Summer Olympics. After all, Angle’s heel persona loved to remind the audience watching WWE shows that he won Olympic gold “with a broken freakin’ neck” as well. It’s true…it’s damn true.
Kurt Angle’s rise to the top in WWE was quick considering he won his first title just three months after his television debut. Angle would add the Intercontinental Title as well, which led to Angle defending and losing both titles at his first WrestleMania in 2000.
In October 2000, Angle defeated The Rock at No Mercy to become the WWE Champion for the first time meaning he won three singles titles (including the big one) in his first full year on WWE television. It’s an incredible feat for a “rookie” in WWE to accomplish.
Angle talked about the push he received on a recent episode of the Kurt Angle Show podcast where he spoke about wearing a lot of medals around his neck even though it was just one Olympic Gold Medal that he won. Angle did wear that Gold Medal sometimes on WWE TV, but most of the time he wore just regular medals instead. Angle explained that it was Vince McMahon’s vision for the character:
“[Winning the European Championship] was great. It was so fitting for me and my character at that particular time. I was carrying all these gold medals around my neck. When I first started, I actually had 25 of them around my neck. The more titles I won, what Vince McMahon told me was that ‘It’s your rookie year, we’re gonna have you win every title because the more titles you win, the more obsessed you become’. That’s why he wanted me to start out with 25 medals around my neck and not just one. I got to do that and it was a great experience. That was my character and the real me.”
While Angle keeps busy doing his podcast, he also recently appeared on the August 29th edition of Raw in his hometown of Pittsburgh and recently teased a possible role at next year’s WrestleMania in Los Angeles.