Kevin Owens is a Canadian wrestling star. Well known to the WWE Universe, Kevin Owens is currently signed to the Raw brand of the WWE. He got there by bringing the best talents of the modern era with his fan following almost assuming a cult status. At first look, he lacks the Rock or Cena type physique that many of his rivals use to compete on wrestling’s biggest stage. But don’t be fooled by the pouch that he’s got- he’s still Kevin from the block! With his decade long background on the independent circuit before NXT and Raw, his rise has always been coming. Here are 10 things you didn’t know about WWE’s Kevin Owens:
Kevin Owens: 10 Interesting Facts About The Wrestler
1. Early Life:
The Canadian wrestler was born as Kevin Yanick Steen in Saint-Jean-sur-Richelieu, Quebec. The pro wrestler grew up speaking French and learned English watching Monday Night Raw on TV, imitating the commentary of Jim Ross and various other wrestlers and personalities.
2. How Did He Get Into Wrestling?
Canadian pro wrestler Kevin Owens was inspired to take up wrestling by watching a videotaped match between Shawn Michaels and Diesel at WrestleMania XI in 1995. During the WWF World Heavyweight Championship match, Diesel would successfully defend his title, pinning Michaels after an awkward Jackknife powerbomb.
Kevin Owens started his wrestling training at the age of 14, working with former NWA and WWF wrestler Terry Taylor soon after. Kevin Owens’s first match was held on his 16th birthday — May 7, 2000. So, yes he was only 16 years old and would go on to start battling various Canadian promotions for the next four years.
4. Getting His Start In The Early 2000s:
Coming from a humble background, Owens hopped on the independent circuit before even dreaming of the bright lights of WWE. However, such was his dedication, that despite not knowing a word of English as a child due to his native language being French, he watched episodes of Raw to learn the language. If you compare that life with today, he is considered one of the best talkers in all of sports entertainment.
In 2005, Kevin Owens was picked up by Pro Wrestling Guerrilla, an independent promotion run by pro-wrestlers which started a couple years before. PWG has helped to kickstart the careers of WWE Champions CM Punk and Daniel Bryan as well as Adam Cole.
5. Even seen Kevin Owens On His Own “The Kevin Steen Show”?
As an independent wrestler, Kevin Owens was able to host ‘The Kevin Steen Show‘ on the Highspots Wrestling Network. Here, he made an extra buck interviewing Matt Hardy, Adam Cole and many other grapplers on the indie circuit.
6. Animal Lover:
Kevin Owens loves animals so much that while traveling to wrestle, he visits zoos whenever he can, particularly in cities that are new to him. Kevin Owens even used to sell ‘Zoo Enthusiast’ t-shirts to his fans at his events!
7. He’s Besties With Sami Zayn:
Kevin Owens is besties with Sami Zayn, dating back to their early days on the independent circuit. The wrestlers used to be both rivals and tag team partners, when Kevin Owens went by his real name and Zayn by the name El Generico. The duo won the World Tag Team Championship twice under the brand PWG and again with Ring of Honor.
8. His Son:
Kevin Owens has won numerous championships in the WWE and around the world mainly because he grew up a huge fan of pro wrestling!
The man took that appreciation into his life inside and outside the ring and even named his son ‘Owen’ after the late Owen Hart who is commonly thought to be one of the greatest pro wrestlers ever. His ring name “Kevin Owens” also pays homage to the fallen wrestler.
Kevin Owens’s son wasn’t only named after his favourite wrestler, his son also played a key role in the ring at a very young age.
At a certain PWG event in 2005, Excalibur insulted the six-month-old child, only to suffer a series of powerbombs from Kevin Owens. The father then placed his son on top of Excalibur for the three-count.
9. WWE Career and NXT Career:
Kevin Owens began his career in the year 2000 at the tender age of 16. After years of dedication and hard work, WWE came calling. He was contracted to the developmental brand of NXT in 2014. Owens is regarded as one of the cornerstones of modern NXT that converted the once redundant brand into a global force to reckon with. Kevin Steen signed with WWE in the summer of 2014 and was dispatched to NXT. Two months after his debut, wrestling as Kevin Owens, the wrestler claimed the NXT title from longtime bestie and rival Sami Zayn.
Owens then went on to make his WWE main-roster debut in May of 2015, attacking none other than John Cena on an episode of Raw. The NXT champion defeated Cena, the United States champion, in a non-title match a couple weeks later. The victory was considered a major upset at the time. Owens then lost his rematch with Cena, falling short of the United States Championship title in July of 2015. But the rising star claimed the Intercontinental Championship title from Ryback a couple months later.
10. Most recently, Owens defeated Seth Rollins at WrestleMania 36:
In August 2016, Owens had another career defining moment at the WWE Universal Championship over Seth Rollins, Roman Reigns and Big Cass in a four-way elimination match. He’s held the title for half a year, basically since its creation, and successfully defended it multiple times.
Did you know? Kevin Owens has a charity! The pro wrestler has generously donated the proceeds that he earned from his WWE T-shirt to mental health charities in The United States and Canada.