at this link. Below are some interview highlights:
On Why He Doesn’t Want to Return to Wrestle:
Well, for one, I wanted to do it while I only enjoyed doing it. It’s a busy job; I can certainly do the ‘one match’ but to me, it’s harder to do that. It’s like the getting up early, if I am doing something on a regular basis and doing part of my habit, and regular routine, it’s easy for me to do something now and again, to do something once or twice a year. I don’t overly think whether or not I will be as good as I was before, but I just don’t roll that way. I can remember as a talent someone being offended when the older guy comes in and takes a payoff from the full-time talent. I can say at least with a shadow of a doubt, that I have never booked myself to come back, they are the ones that call me and tell me about an idea they have. Wrestling fans say to me, it was a couple weeks ago when I was doing something for ‘Gavin Stone,’ literally, nobody has talked to me about it. I recognize that it’s out there, and you guys [Journalists] talk about it, and you guys say that you have talked to me and asked, but no one has. I’m also passed that, I’m 51 and done the teasing thing; everyone looks for the hidden meaning in what I am saying. My wife wants me to go back for the payoff. The best part of the matches is what happens afterwards when you realize how awesome it is; the worst part is the process while going through it, I wasn’t even aware, just last year, my wife saw how focused I was, just going in there for five minutes and kicking someone, she saw how I have to get in there and be laser focused, six weeks of training, I just can’t do it the way everyone else does. If I am going to do something, I am going to do something 100%, and not just one time.
On the Teased Match Between Shawn and AJ Styles:
I am flattered by it, and I always look at it as, look, I’ve been very consistent about being retired. Still, 7 years later, it gets brought up despite me saying I won’t return. However, it does tell me that I am doing what I need to do in the world of entertainment, which is, leave them wanting more. Honestly, for the young guys who are really good. I now get to be like Ric Flair, like Flair was to me. To me, that’s flattering. Generation for us didn’t like it, and made them feel old for saying that you are retired, but my generation we are good with that, it’s flattering to us. I understand both sides of the argument, and that’s the thing. It’s an argument you can’t win, so why even get into the argument? Wrestling is a hassle anyway, who needs the hassle, I’m 51, I’ve been through the hassle for 30 years.
On How He Has Been Able to Create His Own WWE Appearances:
I think that is an individual one on one basis. I don’t think it’s about time or accomplishments, I think that it is taken on a case by case basis, whether it’s my skill or my relationship. You can push whatever idea you want, but Vince has always been the boss, and he still is. No is always no.
On People Not Focusing On the Future:
It’s funny because nobody is as obsessed with the past as pro wrestling fans. Nobody talks about the future. I’m all about the future, but the thing is, even about the ‘Born Again’ thing, it’s been 15 years, all those guys that are friends with me, have been friends with me for 15 years. Again, a book comes out, a movie comes out. It’s still a WWE movie, and I’m in it, it all sounds like it’s strategically done, but honestly it isn’t. It’s become such a natural part of my life, everyone knows, cats out of the bag, it’s just me hanging out and doing whatever.