Ric Flair Confirms Tony Khan Changed Plans For Him Over 'Political' Reasons

"Ric Flair's Last Match" is not what it was initially supposed to be, and the Nature Boy has now confirmed that AEW President Tony Khan had a hand in that. Flair sat down with Chris Van Vliet on the latest episode of "Insight" to discuss how his last match, which will take place this Sunday in Nashville, came about.

"Conrad and I put it together initially," Flair said. "We were going to go outside and get some people from AEW, and then it all became a little political with Tony. I'm not sure why he changed things around, but it's okay. We worked around it and we're sold out, and that's all that matters."

Initial reports had suggested that Flair was going to be teaming with FTR against Ricky Steamboat and the Rock N' Roll Express, but while it's possible something fell through with the involvement of one of AEW's most popular tag teams, Steamboat claims he's the one who turned down the offer. "I thought about it for a week and just recently just declined on it," he said during a signing. Steamboat's reasoning was that he didn't want fans' last impression of him to be tainted, which Flair seems to understand.

"He had that great little run with Jericho back in 2011," Flair said. "I think Rick wanted to go out with that memory."

Instead of tagging with FTR, Flair is teaming up with his son-in-law, Andrade El Idolo, as they go up against Jay Lethal and Jeff Jarrett. The fight has been built over the course of three episodes of a docuseries leading up to the match as well as on Flair and Jarrett's respective podcasts. Lethal and El Idolo are also talents that have been featured on AEW television, rendering the nature of Khan's political machinations unclear.

There had also been speculation that Flair was going to sign a deal with AEW after being released from his WWE contract in 2021, but everything halted following the airing of a "Dark Side Of The Ring" episode that covered Flair's involvement in the infamous "Plane Ride From Hell" back in 2002.

If you use any quotes from this article, please credit "Insight" for the transcription with a h/t to Wrestling Inc. for the transcription.