Ric Flair is leaving the WWE
The 72-year-old ring legend only re-signed with the company last year but they have agreed to release him from his contract after they failed to "see eye to eye" on "some business opportunities", but the Nature Boy insisted he isn't departing under a cloud
5 August 2021
He told People magazine: "We just didn't see eye to eye on some business opportunities that I wanted to pursue, so I asked for my release. There has been no animosity and everything has been on friendly terms."
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Ric insisted reports he had urged WWE boss Vince McMahon to release him because of conflicting storylines with his wrestler daughter Charlotte were "absolutely not true".
He added: "It happens sometimes in business; you just don't see eye to eye. But how could I have any animosity towards the company who made me who I am? They literally made me who I am.
"Some of my best friends in the world work at the company. How could I possibly be upset with the company where my daughter is currently the most decorated woman's wrestler in history?
"It was a mutually agreed-upon decision and I will be moving forward to pursue other exciting endeavors such as my own line of wine, my own network, as well as comic books. I had to make this decision personally for my business and my brand."
Ric - who made his debut for the then-WWF at Royal Rumble in 1992 - last appeared on WWE programming in February when he was involved in a romantic storyline with Charlotte's rival Lacey Evans, but it was dropped after she got pregnant.
And the veteran grappler recently admitted he wasn't comfortable with the storyline.
He said in March: "She's a really nice girl and all that, but it didn't fit this time.
"We made the best of it but ultimately, she's pregnant with her husband now. It was never anything personal, I barely know her and her whole life is her husband and her daughter. I didn't like that one."
In 2017, Ric was placed in a medically-induced coma and told he had a 20 per cent chance of survival after he fell into the early stages of kidney failure and on the verge of congestive heart failure but he eventually recovered.