During Steve Austin's Hall of Fame career in WWE, he had 12 separate title reigns, including four as world champion. However, the Intercontinental Title still holds a special place in the heart of "Stone Cold."
Austin still has the IC title belt he won in 1997 and on a recent episode of the Steve Austin Show, said that he "wouldn't take anything in the world" for it. In fact, he keeps the belt in his safe. According to Austin, it is the same championship belt previously carried by Ultimate Warrior, Randy Savage and Curt Hennig, among others, describing it as "the belt that everybody had before they started making all the different ones."
Austin won the Intercontinental Title for the first time at Summerslam 1997, in a match where he also suffered a career-threatening neck injury when he was spiked on his head by Owen Hart on a tombstone piledriver. Austin finished the match, but had to vacate the title and went on the injured list before returning to action and beating Hart to regain the championship at Survivor Series.
"Getting dropped on my head and almost getting paralyzed over it. The fact that I was able to get up from that and come back and finish my career as a professional wrestler. And I'll never forget that moment. The belt means a lot to me," Austin said. "I told Vince, I told him, I said, 'Hey, man,' I said, 'I want to keep this belt.' He goes, 'You get another one made,' [and Austin replied] 'but this one is mine' and Vince was cool with it and I'll never sell that belt. Whenever I die, that'll still be mine. I will have put in my will whoever I'm going to give it to, but it is an important belt. It's a very historical belt in the sense of who had it. I wish I had a list of all the guys who actually held this belt in their run and now I have it in my safe. It's just a very special belt."
Austin added that he has always valued the Intercontinental Title, considering it to usually end up being carried by "typically the guy who could work his ass off."