WWE Hall of Famer Shawn Michaels recently chatted with Ring Rust Radio to promote his upcoming book. The two sides discussed various topics related to his wrestling career.

Michaels had pitched an idea for a short return to Vince McMahon several months prior to actually returning, which was rejected. He was eventually brought back to TV for the nWo storyline, and was supposed to do a one-off street match with McMahon:

“The next day I was on a plane reading the book of Joshua and just thoughts came into my head about possibly returning. The words “be strong and courageous” at the beginning of Joshua just kept jumping off the page at me. Then I thought maybe I can come back and do this. So I made a call to Vince and threw out an idea that involved just wrestling him actually more than a street fight. The story line was him pushing and forcing Kevin to be in a match when he wasn’t healthy and ended up getting hurt. I was going to come in and defend the honor of wrestlers being pushed too hard by Vince. The story line would cumulate in a throwaway match between Vince and myself. He asked if I was ready and I said I believe I can do it. He said let me think about it and he called me back two weeks later. He said, “Look, if you can do that with me, couldn’t you have a match with Hunter? He is a heck of a lot better than I am.” I said of course but Hunter was the main guy at the time. I wasn’t looking to come back in some big fashion. Just like a couple of exciting matches something a little lower on the card. Just so this way all the focus wouldn’t be there and if I’m going to stumble and fall that it’s done a little lower on the card without the spot light. The opportunity was there to do it with Hunter and I guessed that would be fantastic but it turned into a much bigger and promoted match than what I originally had anticipated.”

He spoke on Roman Reigns needing to deal with criticism as he heads into WrestleMania:

“As far as him being a top star moving forward, I have very little insight on that. I’m the guy that sits there and looks in the rearview mirror and am very thankful for the stuff that I got to do. As far as the pressure, it’s going to be tough. WrestleMania is pressure filled anyway and more so when you’re going for the first time in what might be the main event. If you are being dubbed or people seeing you as the next guy those things mount up. They are important and you want to live up to them and it’s especially hard. Back in my day it was the beginning of the internet and we had the newsletters, but I imagine now with social media it’s all right there at your fingertips. I’d imagine it’s even tougher nowadays. Our line of work if very cynical and a lot of it is driven by cynicism, cruelty, and meanness. It’s easier to believe the negative stuff than the positive stuff. The feel good stories don’t usually spend a lot of time on the front pages. It’s gotta be a pretty tough row to hoe for the guys nowadays. Along with the great notoriety and the good stuff that comes with it, there’s always some negative that comes with it and you have to do your best to balance it along the way.”

Michaels also discussed how The Undertaker was ultimately chosen as his last opponent:

“There was never the tabbing him as the guy, it was coming out of the first one at 25, and feeling so awful great about it. As I mention in the book on the way home, being in a place where if it were all to be over, I would be wonderful with it. That’s when you realize you’re at that stage; it’s time to give that some serious thought. You go through that whole process and you make that decision, and then it was just that and a combination of at the same time getting the call saying, “hey what do you think of this idea?” From my standpoint, my faith played a part in me making my decisions in my wrestling career, it just felt very right with everything Mark and I have been through personally and professionally. Again even though it wasn’t a huge, long drawn out storyline to the degree that the Jericho and I storyline was, it was still one that you felt pretty impacted by and was pretty big. The duration and length of it didn’t give it justice to the impact that it had on me and the fans in general. It was just one of those things where when it all feels right, it can’t be wrong. With all those things falling into place it made that decision that much easier to make.”

More from the interview can be listened to below.

Editor’s Note

It was going to be hard to top their WrestleMania 25 match, but 26 was epic as well. Crazy.


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