Rhino On Time He Thought Stephanie McMahon Was A “Buzzkill”

Rhino poised to hit a gore

Former WWE superstar Rhino has discussed a time he got wasted backstage at a WWE live event, and his interaction with Stephanie McMahon on that occasion.

Rhino made his first official WWE appearance in March 2001, after ECW had closed earlier in the year. He became a three-time Hardcore Champion very quickly, whilst he was aligned with his friends Edge and Christian.

As part of the invasion angle which ran through 2001, Rhino became part of the Extreme faction which was spearheaded by on-screen General Manager Stephanie McMahon. During this time Rhino feuded with Chris Jericho, defending the company’s owner.

During a recent episode of the Talk’n Shop Podcast, the former ECW Champion recalled discussions with Jericho as to how the angle would succeed with Stephanie involved.

So I was working with Jericho and Jericho came to me, and I still learned so much from talking to Jericho for five minutes, how could you not? And he goes, ‘it’s great that we have Stephanie in this angle because they are going to give the angle the time it needs, right? She’ll definitely make sure, you know?’

So I’m like, that’s pretty cool, you get involved with certain people and you get that time because you know how it is.

Rhino went on to discuss his friendship with Stephanie, and his interest in conversations around Andre The Giant.

The cool thing about it is, if we were doing pre tapes, you’re always waiting for the sound guy, the light guys, so we would talk about how like when she was a kid, she’d have to work at the office and stuff too and it was really cool, and we had that friendship, working relationship type deal.

I was always curious about how the company ran when I was a kid watching it and how she was friends with Andre. And that was one person I always wanted to meet, Andre.

Although they clearly got on well, Rhino also talked about a time when he ended up intoxicated after a match, and Stephanie McMahon tried to step in.

I cut a promo, it was a live event, I came back and she said, ‘don’t mention ECW’, this was after that, the whole invasion. She’s like, ‘we’re trying to get away from that’. And I’m like, ‘cool’. So I wrestled Kane. Afterward, she knew I wasn’t drinking before, so Nunzio brought some.

Nunzio wasn’t drinking and I almost finished a fifth, and I didn’t drink at the time, I’m just wasted. And they’re like, ‘why did you drink?’ Anyways, we’re leaving and I’m riding with Christian and we got a late flight, it was an afternoon show. I don’t know why I’m throwing waters in my bag, probably because I’m like, ‘waters!’

I couldn’t take them on the plane, so I’m just throwing them in my bag and I’m staggering. She (Steph) comes up and she’s like, ‘Rhino, are you okay’. She wanted to make sure I wasn’t all pilled up, you could smell the alcohol. And I’m like, ‘what a buzzkill’.

Anyway, I think it’s because we developed that friendship that she didn’t, you know, they didn’t say anything to me. And I’m like, ‘just grabbing a few waters, waiting on Christian. He’s driving’. I wanted to make sure she knew he was driving. But yeah it was cool, Hunter always liked me because he liked my work.

Rhino ended up holding the WWE SmackDown Tag Team Championships alongside Heath Slater for 84. His second release from the company, having previously been let go in 2005, came in 2019.

With thanks to Wrestling Inc for the transcription.