No one stays retired. It’s one of the running gags that is prevalent throughout wrestling history. Ric Flair, Terry Funk, Mick Foley…they all returned. One man who has kept his word? Shawn Michaels.
HBK is arguably the greatest superstar to ever step into a WWE ring. The legendary career of Michaels and his show-stopping performances at WrestleMania events throughout history can only be matched by one man: The Undertaker. This past week on RAW featured the return of both HBK and ‘Taker to our screens, the former to cement his opinion that Triple H would defeat his longtime rival, or “cerebrally assassinate” to steal a phrase. This brought out The Deadman who brought up the WrestleMania history of all three men, confirming his dominance at the Showcase of the Immortals.
Why Tease With No Payoff?
The way that the segment ran played out like a very elaborate tease. It has been reported in the past that Vince McMahon loathes segments that tease impossible scenarios. Such as the Steve Austin podcast incident where he was goaded by Paul Heyman into seemingly challenging Brock Lesnar to a Texas Deathmatch…so would a scripted show like RAW have this ‘tease’ without merit? It’s possible, but why would you try something like this if it leads to nothing? WWE does have history in this department so it IS possible.
The question is, should HBK return to the ring? Yes and no. Yes because he is one of the greatest ever. No because it would need to be against The Undertaker. We really don’t need to see that match again do we? After two of the greatest WrestleMania matches ever do we need to retread that well worn path?
Rumors were floating that Michaels and AJ Styles could have a match for the WWE Championship at the Royal Rumble in 2017. It caused a huge buzz and there at least a slim chance that it could happen. The hype for this potential match was unreal and it could’ve been a real crowning moment in Styles’ career. However as Michaels stated in his RAW promo, he is a man of his word and he would not come out of retirement.
What’s The Likelihood?
Triple H and Undertaker will battle for the final time at the Showdown event in Australia in October. Michaels will probably be involved in some way but will it lead to one final HBK vs Taker match? If Undertaker truly decides that he wants to hang up his boots at next year’s WrestleMania (how many times have you seen that phrase over the years?) then could Michaels be the man to retire him? It would make for a fantastic moment to see HBK back in the ring but would this best be served for a new up and coming Superstar to give Undertaker his last hurrah?
Whatever happens, if we get one more Shawn Michaels match then it would be a spectacle we never expected. Seeing one of the greatest ever go at it one final time can’t be considered a bad thing. If Undertaker wants to retire against Shawn Michaels then they can both ride off into the sunset.
Here’s to WrestleMania 35, a decade after the greatest match in Mania history…one final time.