Ric Flair knows a thing or two about retiring from wrestling – he has tried to do it on a few occasions.
But The Nature Boy is such a staple of the art that while he has stopped having matches, the 72-year-old has never truly gone away.
For the Undertaker, he has also struggled with letting go.
It wasn’t until he had his match with AJ Styles at WrestleMania 36 just under a year ago that he realised that should and would be his last match, and what a fitting way to go.
At Survivor Series in November, WWE bid farewell to The Deadman on the 30th anniversary of his debut in the company.
Ric Flair has shared the text he sent The Phenom to wish him a happy retirement with Wrestling Inc.
The Undertaker had his ‘Final Farewell’ to the WWE Universe at Survivor Series last month
“Happy Thanksgiving Champ!! Thank you for carrying this business and setting the bar of greatness! The bar we all strived to reach and very few have even gotten close to! Then, now and forever you are ‘The Champ’!! So proud to call you my friend.”
Flair and Undertaker had a match at WrestleMania back in 2002 which was only Flair’s second match back in WWE.
During his interview with Wrestling Inc, the 16-time world champion opened up about the titanic clash.
“That’s when Mark carried me, but we did have a hell of a match,” Flair said. “In 2002, I’m 54, but we did have a hell of a match, which was great. After The Last Ride, he talks about [how] he had some insecurities too. His were around health problems, bad back and stuff like that, which caused him to be insecure. Mine was all mental but we share that in common.
“Self confidence, no matter if it’s your body’s holding up or your mind and being able to do it and perform at the level that everybody thinks you can, it doesn’t matter how many times Hunter (Triple H) will say to me, ‘God damn it! You’re Ric Flair! Go out there and just relax. Be yourself.’ It goes in one ear, and it goes out the other.
“You shake your head and go ‘yes,’ and then you walk through the curtain and it’s just not there. And I think that is just due to being beating down for so long. I still really enjoyed some of that time and such great guys, Randy [Orton], Dave [Batista and] Hunter. How cool is that? Right?!”