Sting Reveals Inspiration For Career Longevity, Plan For Earlier AEW Retirement

Even at 64 years old, and with his career set to end at AEW Revolution 2024, Sting remains just as captivating a performer as he was during his heyday in WCW, and in some ways is taking even more risks than in his younger years. It's even more remarkable given that many thought it wasn't possible just eight years ago, when an injury suffered in a match with Seth Rollins seemed to signal the end of Sting's career. Speaking to "Sports Illustrated," Sting was upfront about changing things up as he's headed towards the close of his career, in order to still be the level of performer many have come to expect. In that regard, Sting has taken inspiration from a famous movie star's turn as an aged gunslinger in one of the most popular westerns of the '90s.

"I've gotten some inspiration from Clint Eastwood in 'Unforgiven,'" Sting said. "He did all the classic spaghetti westerns, and now he's the aged western guy. He's still getting the job done, he's just using different tactics. I've figured out new ways to entertain, new ways to go balls to the wall. But it doesn't mean I'm any less hard on myself."

Sting will now be going "balls to the wall" for the final few months of his career with Ric Flair, who debuted at "AEW Dynamite" last Wednesday as Tony Khan's gift to the AEW/WCW/TNA icon. And Flair's presence is no small deal for Sting, who revealed that prior to Flair's arrival, he was thinking about calling it a day earlier than expected. "I wanted to finish earlier, maybe in December," Sting said. "But now that Ric is here with me, I want to go longer, all the way to Revolution."