Ric Flair’s final wrestling match could’ve transported a diehard fan back in time.
He did his iconic strut down to the ring, led the sold-out crowd in his “Woo!” chant, and his face was covered in blood to end the match, as it often was in his glory days. The 73-year-old Flair also faked a heart attack at one point and was visibly exhausted at other points.
Flair’s first match since 2011 ended the only way it could: with his signature figure-four leglock. He pulled it off in front of a sold-out crowd of nearly 10,000 fans at Municipal Auditorium in Nashville, Tennessee. ESPN reported that “The Nature Boy” had that crowd at his disposal for the entirety of the match.
Flair was partnered up with his son-in-law, Andrade El Idolo, against the tag team of Jay Lethal and Jeff Jarrett.
Flair was later helped out of the ring, where he went to meet his family and was also met by wrestling royalty in The Undertaker, Bret Hart, and Mick Foley.
“I had one of my best matches of my career here with Ricky Steamboat,” Flair said. “All my family is here. We made jokes about me being married five times. All the kids are here. One wife, but all my granddaughters. My friends are here. I swear to God, guys. If I didn’t have enough pressure on me tonight, f–king Kid Rock walked into the locker room tonight.”
The match was nearly 30 minutes and the WCW and WWE legend was clearly laboring at points. Still, he was able to land chops, punches, and his donkey kick while Andrade, Lethal, and Jarrett took up the bulk of the heavy hitting. Flair even took a suplex from Lethal.
The finish came when Jarrett accidentally landed his guitar shot on Lethal when Andrade pulled Flair out of the way. Flair’s other son-in-law, Conrad Thompson, then tossed a pair of brass knuckles to Andrade, who handed them off to Flair. Flair used them to strike Jarrett before putting him in his finishing move to win the match.
“This match is the most important of my career,” said Andrade, who is married to Flair’s daughter and WWE star, Charlotte. “… This is unbelievable. I don’t even have words for this. [Flair] feels better than guys 20 years old. He’s an inspiration to me.”
Flair is a 16-time world champion and a two-time WWE Hall of Famer. He’s one of the greatest to ever step in the ring and his stardom transcends just the wrestling world. Flair lead the Four Horsemen faction and his classic “Woo!” will be echoed forever.