Wrestling Olympic gold medallist Gable Steveson signs with WWE

The wrestler, who clinched gold at Tokyo 2020 in dramatic fashion, took to his social media to announce that he had signed a deal.

By Chloe Merrell
Picture by 2021 Getty Images

Tokyo 2020 Olympic wrestling gold medallist Gable Steveson has signed a deal with World Wrestling Entertainment (WWE).

Rumours had been circling ever since the 125kg heavyweight posted a cryptic tweet on September 4 claiming to have 'Just put the pen to paper..'.

Today (September 9) it was confirmed that the 21-year-old has switched his wrestling singlet for the bright lights of the WWE.

Flipping brilliant celebration after winning Olympic gold

The two-time All-American from Minnesota made headlines at the Games after he became the first U.S. heavyweight to win the men's freestyle 125kg event since 1992.

Steveson's triumph over three-time world champion Geno Petriashvili in Japan was the stuff of Hollywood scripts.

The Pan-American champion dominated the earlier encounters of the bout, but at 5-2 the Georgian resurged and brought the score back to within one. The match then looked all but over for Steveson after his 27-year-old opponent scored a late takedown to take the lead 8-5.

Just when the match seemed decided, the American the snatched victory with final takedown in the dying moments of the very last second.

"I knew I had it in me," Steveson said after his thrilling victory.

"The reason I was stunned was because the U.S. has not had a heavyweight champion in 20 plus years, and I did it at 21 years old."

Elated with his win Steveson, who was named after US freestyle wrestler gold medallist Dan Gable, wowed audiences across the world when he backflipped in celebration.

Stevenson backflips after winning Olympic gold at Tokyo 2020.
Picture by 2021 Getty Images

Following in the footsteps of other great Olympians

In making the shift to WWE, the former NCAA Champion and Dan Gable award will be following in something of an already established tradition.

Most famously, Atlanta 1996 100kg freestyle wrestling gold medallist Kurt Angle made the transition from sport's greatest stage to WWE after winning his Olympic title.

Other Olympians who have also made the switch include Mark Henry, who competed in weightlifting at Barcelona 1992 and Atlanta 1996, and Ronda Rousey who clinched bronze in judo at Beijing 2008 before going on to have an illustrious entertainment career.

Not only will Steveson be taking a path well trodden, he will also be in good company.

His older brother Bobby Steveson confirmed earlier this week that he would be entering the world of entertainment with WWE. Like Gable, Bobby also wrestled at the University of Minnesota.