Heartbreak Kid says the 16-time world champion was a ‘huge’ influence on his wrestling career
WWE LEGEND Shawn Michaels has revealed his heartache over his idol Ric Flair’s health scare this week.
Speaking exclusively to Sun Sport, Michaels said that Flair was a “huge” influence on his wrestling career.
“It would be hard enough if the guy I looked to as the be all and end all of why I wanted to do this stuff was going through a challenging time,” said Michaels.
“That would be hard enough on its own. You put on top of that, that he’s now a friend and close.”
Flair was hospitalised last weekend for apparent colon-related issues.
Fears worsened on Monday when a representative tweeted to say that the 16-time world champion was facing “tough medical issues” and asked for “prayers and “positive energy”.
It’s well known that Michaels idolised Flair as a teenager – and even posed for now-infamous photos imitating the ‘Nature Boy’ before getting into the wrestling business himself.
Michaels also had the honour of facing his hero in Flair’s emotional retirement match at WrestleMania 24.
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The match ended with telling HBK saying “I love you” before hitting a superkick to end Flair’s WWE career.
Michaels told Sun Sport: “I go back to being the 15-year-old kid – it’s easy for me to do that.
“And to fast forward all these years later – to be where we’re at as friends and peers – I’m thankful for all that.
“But it makes this particular time very difficult because certainly I can say I’m not ready for anything other than us to continue being friends for the rest of our lives.
“And I’d like that to be a very long time.
“It’s not a fun process for any of the people that care about him – as many of us do.”
Initial reports claimed Flair required heart surgery but that has been denied with the latest news being he 68-year-old needed a colon procedure.
WWE.com is now reporting that Flair has undergone successful surgery – giving fans hope that the influential star is now on the road to recovery.
Meanwhile, his daughter and former women’s champ Charlotte has posted her thanks to well-wishers on Instagram.
“Hi guys, On behalf of my family and I, we want to THANK everyone for the prayers, texts, calls and support. Our Dad is a FIGHTER and your continued thoughts and prayers MEAN THE WORLD to us. We will update everyone when we have more information”
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