LAS VEGAS, NEVADA - OCTOBER 01: Actor and former professional wrestler Kevin Nash attends Unicon 2021 at the World Market Center on October 01, 2021 in Las Vegas, Nevada. (Photo by Gabe Ginsberg/Getty Images)
Kevin Nash's Basketball Career Ended After He Slapped His Coach
WWE legend Kevin Nash was a successful basketball player throughout the three years he spent at the University of Tennessee. It seemed he had a solid chance at playing the sport professionally with his 6-foot-10 frame and skill level, but all that changed after a quick series of mistakes that altered the trajectory of his life and career.
After a loss to Kentucky in which Nash was ejected for getting into a fight, a confrontation between him and his coach wound up costing him. Nash told in a 2012 Grantland profile, "We go back to the locker room and [head coach Don] DeVoe kept saying, 'Hey, hothead, you cost us the game' [...] He kept running his mouth so I b****-smacked him. I bear-pawed him."
Nash quit the University of Tennessee after that incident, although he continued playing overseas and served two years in the army before a knee injury forced Nash to quit basketball entirely. When Nash was working as a floor manager in a gentleman’s club in Atlanta, he was recruited into wrestling and made his debut for WCW in 1990.