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Ric Flair On What Is Missing in Wrestling Today, Credits AJ Styles In Getting Over Before WWE

August 3, 2020 | Posted by Jeremy Thomas
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Appearing on a recent episode of Booker T’s Hall of Fame podcast, Ric Flair discussed what he thinks is missing in wrestling today and how AJ Styles was able to get over before he came to WWE. Booker and Flair were discussing what they do to try and educate and help the next generation, which led to Booker asking about how many potential resources in the business were gone too soon in the likes of Bruiser Brody. Flair talked about how a big that is missing from wrestling are people who have the experience of working with many different people over an extended amount of time. He also talked about how AJ Styles is a relatively rare example of someone who has that experience and how he managed to get himself over before he every set foot in WWE, which led to his massive crowd reaction when he made his debut in the company.

You can check out highlights and the full audio below:

On what he thinks is missing from wrestling today: “I think it’s the immense number, or huge number of characters-slash-wrestlers that I got to wrestle, and you probably did too on the way up. I mean, you could probably list 20 guys that you wrestled a hundred times. I don’t think there’s anybody, with the exception of Randy Orton right now on the roster, that had that kind of experience to wrestle that many guys.”

On AJ Styles’ success around the world: “AJ is an example, just to change the subject, but on the same subject matter, AJ [worked] Japan, he’s been everywhere. And I was absolutely, I thought, ‘Wow!’ When he came out the door his first time at WWE, you had to think to yourself, ‘Man, where has this guy been,’ right? What a reaction. And all he’d been to was TNA, I guess Ring of Honor, and Japan. They knew him when he came out of the door. It was huge.

“So you can never speculate as to where someone catches the public eye. I mean, that’s one of the things that you got to be careful of. Where you go, you’re gonna be judged for the moment. And that’s just what it is. But when he came out the door [in his WWE debut], that spoke volumes for the other promotions that you wouldn’t have thought would have given him the recognition, and the defining audience that he’s developed, and following with the WWE.”

If you use any of the quotes in this article, please credit The Hall of Fame with a h/t to 411mania.com for the transcription.