WWE News

JBL Discusses The Moment He Knew He Had To Retire


JBL realized he had to retire after he didn’t feel comfortable taking a certain opponent’s finishing move.

John “Bradshaw” Layfield‘s Hall of Fame career in WWE spanned decades, starting in 1995 as Justin “Hawk” Bradshaw and including many title reigns. After being knowns simply as Bradshaw for a number years, he underwent a major character change to his JBL persona and won the WWE Championship in 2004.

Speaking on his Stories with Brisco and Bradshaw podcast, JBL recalled an incident where he realized that despite taking the move numerous times before, he no longer felt comfortable taking an AA from John Cena due to fear of exacerbating the many injuries he’d sustained over his wrestling career.

“I hated this because when I was wrestling Cena in ‘08 or ‘09, he wanted to put me and Orlando on his shoulders and do an AA to both of us. I had been hurt so many times… my back was bad, I thought I couldn’t take the move. I thought, ‘If I take that move, I won’t be able to get up.’ I told John, ‘I’m sorry, I’ll do anything else but I can’t do it.’”

This hesitation made the WWE Hall of Famer realize that it was time to retire from in-ring competition, and he hung up his wrestling boots in 2009.

“That’s when I knew that it was time to get out the ring, because I don’t think I’d ever turned down anything. That really bothered me because I didn’t want it to look like I didn’t want to do something. I just knew I’d get hurt. That’s when I knew I was too old. Time to retire and do a podcast!”

After ending his in-ring career, JBL continued to work for the WWE in a variety of capacities, serving as a commentator for many years and also taking on the role of NXT General Manager from 2013-2104. He was inducted into the WWE Hall of Fame as part of the class of 2020. He has returned to physicality in the ring a few times, but his only proper match was when he appeared as a surprise entrant in the 2014 Royal Rumble.

h/t Sportskeeda