After nearly seven years away from the ring -- save for an unsanctioned "match" against Randy Orton -- Christian returned at WWE Royal Rumble 2021.
Christian was a surprise entrant, coming to the ring at number 24 and lasted nearly 20 minutes before being eliminated by Seth Rollins.
Appearing on The Bump, Christian detailed his process of getting cleared to return and wanting to go out on his terms.
"It's been a long process to get myself to the point where I could step into the ring again. I retired because of injuries seven years ago and I'd be lying if I didn't say Edge returning last year at the Royal Rumble made me think a little bit. When I heard him step through that curtain -- as a performer, you're a control freak. When you're out there and it's you in the ring, you can control what happens. I felt out of control in that situation for him. I wanted it to go so well for him that I got nervous and had to walk away because I was getting so anxious and wanted him to do so well and be okay. When I heard his music hit and that reaction, there's nothing like that live reaction from the WWE Universe. When I watched him, I know we had different injuries, but it put that bug in my ear and I started thinking maybe it was a possibility. I put it to the side and didn't think anything of it. In the summer, when I had the unsanctioned match against Randy Orton, I looked at where I was in my life and was like, 'am I making healthy choices?' I wasn't in the best shape ever. Living that retired life. I started thinking I should make some physical changes and get back into shape and see if it can actually happen. I was thinking did I want that to be the lasting memory people had of me, getting punted in a 10-second match. The way my career ended before never sat well with me as it was. I needed to get back in there and finish it on my terms and my way. If it was just the one match at Royal Rumble then so be it, but I needed to end it on my terms. I told myself if I do these tests and I pass, then opens new doors. If I don't, then I'm in no different position. They told me I wasn't crazy and it snowballed from there," he said.
Christian said he got on a good diet and built himself a tiny gym in his garage to get himself into shape to make an in-ring return.
Though Christian had been cleared, he didn't know he was going to be in the Royal Rumble until 48 hours before the event.
"I found at 7:30 on Friday night and it was a whirlwind from there. In hindsight, I would have liked to have a little more time, being able to get in the ring and things like that, but it also gave me -- I was nervous when I got the call. Where is my gear? These are things I have to find. Once I started piecing things together, there was no time to think. I had so much to do to prepare on Saturday, then we all went to the arena on Sunday and I was surprisingly calm. For not having stepped foot in the ring for seven years, there were no nerves. This is what I was born to do. There was nothing to be nervous about. I'm afraid to watch it back because I don't want to see something I didn't like. Eventually, I'll watch it back. In my mind, I felt rusty," said Christian.
Christian did note that his friend Lance Storm texted him and said it pained him to admit that Christian had not lost a step after he watched the event.
Edge previously revealed that he knew Christian had been cleared, but very few others knew what was going on as Christian is often backstage at events.
"I've been around so much, doing different things, I'm always kind of there," said Christian. "It's not out of the ordinary for me to show up at some point to be doing something for WWE Network or pre-show panel. Edge was in the Rumble and staying at my house for the weekend. As far as anyone knew, I was there for him and hanging out to support and watch him make his return."
Christian noted that he believes his return meant more to Edge than it did to him.
As far as his future goes, things are still to be determined for the former WWE World Heavyweight Champion.
"No decisions have been made," Christian said when asked if we would step into the ring again. "I'm not sure at this point, it's still to be determined. We'll take it day-by-day. If that ends up being my last match, I did it on my terms and that's all I wanted."
Christian has not appeared on WWE television since his return.
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