Former WWE Champion, Kurt Angle, has revisited his official retirement match at WrestleMania 35 and labelled it as mere filler on what was a stacked card.
For many, WrestleMania represents the pinnacle of sports entertainment. For Kurt Angle, it was the stage on which he hoped for one final match that would do justice to a legendary career following an affinity with ‘The Grandest Stage of Them All.’
Now, ‘The Olympic Gold Medallist’ has taken to his Kurt Angle Show, to reveal that his retirement match against Baron Corbin was little more than a filler bout rather than the spectacle he would have wished:
“When you have 16 matches that’s a long show. I think that show was seven hours long. It was ridiculously long. There were a lot of matches on there of course and being 14, it is a lot of pressure. I also understood when you’re in the business as many years as I am, you realize what each match is for and what it represents. The number 14 match – it was structured in between two featured matches. The number 14 match, which was my match with Baron Corbin was only six minutes long. It was a filler match. That’s what it was. It is what it is.”
He went on to show sympathy with the decision and his placement on the card, stating that it was the match that was necessary for him and that he was doing a favour for Vince McMahon who wanted the stalwart to get Corbin over:
“I understand why they did it. My body was breaking down and I couldn’t go at the level I could go as I used to. So I think Vince McMahon gave me the retirement match not that I exactly wanted, but needed and I was just happy to have the match.
Vince wanted me to get him [Baron Corbin] over and that was the plan the whole time. I knew that and at the time when they told me, I was thinking: ‘This is going to be my last [run] and I’m going to retire and I need to tell Vince and if I want an opponent other than Baron, I need to tell him right now.’ So I went to his office and I said, ‘I’m gonna retire at WrestleMania, Vince. And I know you have a program planned with Baron, but I would like to have John Cena because I started his career and I’d want him to end mine.’ I thought it made a lot of sense. He said, ‘Well, you’re not doing that this year. You can possibly do it next year if you continue to wrestle for a year.’”
Unfortunately, Kurt Angle’s body was the deciding factor in the choice of his final opponent:
“And I said, ‘Well, no I want to retire this year cause my body’s breaking down and I don’t want to go on after that. I’m not able to perform at the level I expect to, and I’m not crazy about wrestling Baron only because of his status at the time’. Don’t get me wrong, Baron was a great worker and he was very professional. He was great to work with, but I just don’t think at that time that he was at the level he needed to be to wrestling a main eventer or Hall of Famer.”
Kurt would lose to Baron Corbin, fulfilling his role of allowing the upstart’s star power to rise with the victory. WrestleMania 35 also featured Kofi Kingston getting the better of Daniel Bryan for a historic WWE title victory.
Lately, Kurt Angle has spoken about his relationship with his WrestleMania 34 teammate, Ronda Rousey, and how he wanted to win titles in his final run with WWE.
Credit for the interview: The Kurt Angle Show
Credit for the transcription: WrestleZone