- Steve Blackman, though underrated, had a successful career in WWE’s Attitude Era, especially as a mid-card talent and Hardcore Champion.
- Blackman’s martial arts training gave him a legitimate persona that fit well with the gritty tone of the Attitude Era.
- After dealing with neck injuries, Blackman left WWE in 2002 and has since been involved in MMA events, a training school, and the bail-bondsman business while also being a family man.
Steve Blackman’s arguably one of the most underrated superstars that came out of WWE‘s Attitude Era. Even though he wasn’t nearly as successful as Attitude Era superstars like The Rock or Steve Austin, Blackman’s a well-remembered figure from that generation as he stood as someone one wouldn’t want to mess with in any way. Someone who had championship success as a mid-card talent, especially with the Hardcore Championship, many fans would probably like to know why Blackman departed from WWE in 2002 after only a few years, and what he’s been up to since walking away from the professional wrestling industry.
Steve Blackman’s Long Journey To Get To WWE
Steve Blackman came a long way to get to where he’s at regarding his legacy in professional wrestling. Some fans may not know this but Blackman could’ve signed with WWE long before 1997, as he’d gotten involved in the professional wrestling business in 1986. During the late 1980s, Blackman’s wrestled a couple of TV matches for WWE, and he appeared different than he did during his WWE run in the late 1990s and early 2000s.
However, because he got sick after wrestling a 1989 match in South Africa, Steve Blackman’s health made it impossible at the time. However, as he decided to get involved in martial arts like Tae Kwon Do and Escrima as part of his rehabilitation, he got in tremendous physical shape. Blackman would use his martial arts training as the selling point of his on-screen character when he eventually arrived at WWE.
Steve Blackman Makes An Impact During The Attitude Era
Thanks to Steve Blackman’s martial arts training, he was ready for the limelight in WWE and had a built-in persona that made his character appear legitimate in the eyes of the fans. And with WWE going a more grimy tone to its product in 1997, someone like Blackman was perfect to get lumped in with the rest of the rugged characters of the Attitude Era.
On a November 1997 episode of Raw Is War, Blackman made his debut by helping Vader from getting assaulted by The Hart Foundation, as the group was the top heel acts in WWE in late 1997. Upon inserting himself into feuding with The Hart Foundation, Blackman wrestled his first WWE PPV representing Team USA in the 4-on-4 Survivor Series Elimination match, establishing himself as a prominent character on WWE TV as the company launched the Attitude Era.
In the four years Steve Blackman was active for WWE, he mainly gained success as a mid-card talent, specifically regarding the Hardcore division. Blackman won the Hardcore Championship six times and has the record for most combined days as the titleholder, 172 days altogether.
Some also might be surprised to know that Steve Blackman was among the many WWE superstars that participated in the Brawl For All shoot-fight tournament, with many feeling like he had the best chance to win. Blackman defeated Marc Mero in the first round before withdrawing from the tournament due to sustaining an injury.
Despite being presented as a serious competitor, Steve Blackman could also do comedy antics. Fans who grew up watching the Attitude Era probably remember the tag team between Blackman and Al Snow called Head Cheese. Head Cheese consisted of Blackman wearing a “cheesehead” hat despite being presented as serious. It was part of the appeal of the tag team as he and Al Snow were involved in many comedic angles.
Why Steve Blackman Left WWE And What He’s Been Up To Since
In late 2001, Steve Blackman’s professional wrestling career began to wind down as he sat out the rest of his contract when he continued dealing with neck injuries. He officially left WWE in October 2002.
Upon leaving, Blackman’s professional wrestling career became very limited as he was on the verge of retiring. He only wrestled a few matches before retiring from the ring in 2007 after returning to WWE for one night to participate in the Raw 15th Battle Royal.
Since then, Steve Blackman has gotten involved in other various ventures. For instance, he involved himself in the fighting business when he held MMA events in Pennsylvania while opening up a training school there. Leaving behind his professional wrestling career, while becoming a bounty hunter, Blackman works in the bail-bondsman business. He’s also a family man as he’s married with two children.