WWE officially announced the departure of Ric Flair on August 3 as the two sides were able to come to a release agreement.
Flair was used sparingly on WWE television, usually brought back for legend events or tied to his daughter Charlotte. He was sent home by Charlotte in February after his storyline with Lacey Evans was scrapped due to Lacey's real-life pregnancy. Since leaving WWE, Flair has appeared at AAA TripleMania and NWA 73.
Speaking to Renee Paquette on Oral Sessions, Flair detailed what led to his WWE departure.
"I had a bunch of pending opportunities. I had things that I was doing currently at the time I signed my contract. They allowed those. Wendy got to keep her shop. These are big things. I got to keep cameo and a couple other things. A couple of deals were coming along and I got to the point where, I was asking them, I probably exhausted them asking, not to grandfather me in, but to let me do them. Of course, the answer was, 'You can do them, maybe.' I wanted to finally, which I did for three years, make a living not being under a wrestling payroll. That's all it was. There is no animosity, it's just business. I wanted to try something and they had a different vision," said Flair.
When asked about WWE's vision for him, Flair replied, "To just get paid, basically, a lot of money. Nothing is wrong with that. I'm doing NWA 73, which is a huge deal. I was the last traveling world champion, 365, twice on Saturday and Sunday. I did that for five years. Not a lot of people can say that. I probably wouldn't have been able to do that. Not because Vince would have said no. It would have never got to him. I didn't leave with any animosity. When I almost died four years ago, I found out who my friends were when I woke up, and I found out who my friends were when I left WWE. You'd be surprised, on the positive side, how many people who reached out. I can also tell you, people who started rumors, no need to get into that. 'Oh, he's going to AEW. He and Tony Khan are friends.' Yeah, we are friends, but I haven't heard a word from Tony [Khan]. If he asks you, tell him I'm around [laughs]."
The interview was recorded before NWA 73. Flair did say in his NWA 73 promo that he could have a drink with Tony Khan.
When asked how Vince McMahon and Charlotte reacted to his departure, Flair said, "I talked to Vince after it was over and I said, 'whatever paths our lives take us, we're always going to be brothers.' He said, 'You're damn right.' Ashley [Charlotte Flair] would never leave there, she's the happiest she's ever been. Obviously, they're not mad at me."
Flair got physical at TripleMania, delivering chops to Kenny Omega and putting Konnan in the figure four. Flair noted that WWE wouldn't let him walk up the steps without fear of him hurting himself, much less get physical in the ring.
"Hypothetically, if I wanted to go work at AEW, I would go to [Vince] and say, 'I want to do this and want to get back in the ring and I know you don't like that, if I wanted to get knocked down or something. He would say to me, 'Ultimately, what's best for you is best for me,'" he said.
When asked if he wanted to get back in the ring, Flair replied, "Get back in the ring and entertain? Absolutely. I would ask [Vince] first because I owe that to him. I got a text from Randy Orton, I can't read it to you, I don't have it. Let me tell you something if you're at AEW and the Four Horsemen get together, everyone in the world watches. Arn [Anderson], Tully [Blanchard], Barry [Windham] is sitting about a mile from here, and JJ [Dillon], you fly him in. You do a half-hour interview with [Tony] Schiavone and Jim Ross."
Flair also brought up the possibility of teaming with Andrade to take on Darby Allin & Sting, saying Sting looked like he was having the time of his life in AEW. You can find Darby's thoughts on that bout by clicking here.
Flair also noted that he wanted to be the person to introduce Renee for her first AEW appearance and said he would be in Chicago for AEW All Out week to support Andrade as well.
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