It is plain to see that the career of the most legendary professional wrestler to ever grace our sport is coming to an end. At the age of 59 years old, Ric Flair is likely to be calling it quits at Wrestlemania 24 in what is set to be his last ever professional wrestling match with "The Heartbreak Kid" Shawn Michaels, in what is slated to be a show stealer and an epic and emotional bout for Ric Flair and the fans alike.
However, should Shawn Michaels be the one to end the career of the most legendary wrestler of all time? Shawn Michaels himself has stated in recent years that his knees and his back are bad and that he is feeling the effects of wear and tear from the sport, so it could be very likely that Shawn himself may be nearing his own retirement. Whether this match is highly anticipated or not, I do not believe that Shawn alone should be the one to end the career of Ric Flair, especially if he may not be in the sport long enough to benefit from it.
The way I see it is that there could have been many opportunities to put over younger stars in this match-up, stars with a future in the business, the likes of current WWE talent Montel Vontavious Porter and Mr. Kennedy, both of whom have played a role in the current Ric Flair retirement storyline but came short in the process of the attempts to put Ric Flair away for good. Is the WWE really doing all they can to make the storyline an epic? Are they doing all they can to make the final year of Ric Flair's career as memorable as his decades and decades in the sport already? Or are they simply making any attempt and any storyline to get him out as soon as possible? Are they truly respecting the greatest legacy of all time the way they should?
The answer of course is a no. If they were going to do so, then where are the faces that have played a part in the career of Ric Flair? Where are Sting, Terry Funk, Dusty Rhodes, Harley Race, Arn Anderson, Tully Blanchard, JJ Dillon, Diamond Dallas Page, Randy Savage and Hulk Hogan? Where the generations of stars that have attempted to put Flair out in the past and failed? The answer, WWE just can not be bothered, or the writers have no idea how to plan it all out.
The way this storyline should have been played out is people from Flair's past show up and help save his career, then others from Flair's past show up and attempt to end it. This would be portrayed on the weekly shows, likely having The Four Horsemen in his own corner attempting to save him, and having faces from his past in the other corner trying to end it. This would end up as a faction towards the major pay per views, those recently of course being Royal Rumble, No Way Out and Wrestlemania next.
For the first two pay per views, the stars from the past who attempted to end Flair's career would be in the corner of the up and comers, Montel Vontavious Porter and Mr. Kennedy at the two previous pay per views that they also failed to put Flair out, with obvious cheats and interferences with many near falls. Mr. McMahon who in storyline has played a part of wanting to put Flair out would then announce an obvious method to destroy Flair once and for all, and that would be by putting Flair in a Three Falls match-up in which Flair has to face 3 opponents and if he loses any of those matches, he is gone, forever, forced into retirement.
This would open a door to have a "Past, Present and Future" 3 falls match-up. A star from Flair's past in match one, a star from Flair's present in match 2 and a Star of the future in match three. The likes of Terry Funk, Rowdy Roddy Piper, Hulk Hogan or Dean Malenko fit perfectly into the Past section, the present would be someone such as Batista, Shawn Michaels or Triple H, and the future would be someone like Mr. Kennedy, Montel Vontavious Porter, or an up and comer who has yet to debut, someone like recently released TNA talent "Wildcat" Chris Harris or Ron "The Truth" Killings.
Naturally, Flair would win the first 2 match-ups, and be down and out for the third, possibly due to interference from the stars from his past, giving the third and supposedly final opponent the Edge advantage over Flair, giving the impression that Flair is done for. Flair of course would go back to his roots of the dirtiest player in the game, and score a rollup victory, tight grab and all, from a low blow. This would then spark a flame in Mr. McMahon who would come out and announce himself as Flair's fourth opponent. The odds obviously against Ric Flair, there are two ways this could go. McMahon could have a huge star return and cost Flair the match forcing him into retirement, or, an angle could run that if Flair wins, he becomes the General Manager, commissioner, or Kayfabe owner of WWE, giving him minimal television time and mainly a storyline backstage role.
Of course, that too would be optional, and a likely replacement would be having Flair pin McMahon, then getting on the microphone and tearfully retiring gracefully in victory. This of course would cause the RAW locker room to empty and there would be a celebration in the ring, similarly to what happened many years back when Flair had recently returned.
There are so many ways in which this storyline could have been made into perfection, and still could possibly be rebuilt into something memorable, but the likely situation is that it will NOT happen. Either way, it is safe to say that Ric Flair's career will be over come WrestleMania time, another big giveaway is that he is being inducted into the WWE Hall of Fame this year. Still, WWE has NOT done anything special to acknowledge the career of Ric Flair, I am nothing but a fan, a longtime follower of both Flair and The Horsemen, and even I listed above a brilliant way for Flair to go out.
Thank you for the memories Ric Flair, it will be sad to see you leave our sport, expecially in a manner which was utilized so poorly by an organization such as World Wrestling Entertainment. We request - ONE MORE MATCH. Flair Versus Sting, one more time, to put an end to one of the greatest on-going feuds in the history of professional wrestling.
Will that ever happen?
Thank you for the memories, thank you for giving your life, your heart and your PASSION for the fans. You will be sorely missed.
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