"I'm Sorry, I Love You:" Poignant Moment in Wrestling History

Adrian StaehleSenior Analyst IMay 24, 2009

It is the greatest poignant moment in wrestling history; it is one of the greatest matches that I have been privileged to watch, it is the two greatest superstars to every grace a ring; it was Ric Flair vs Shawn Michaels at WrestleMania 24.

There was 61 years of experience, 64 titles, 19 World Championships, three Royal Rumble winners, 20 matches of the year, including their own at WrestleMania, seven feuds of the year, and both Triple Crown winners in that ring and in the moment history alone was made.

The match was one of the greatest match that the world has ever seen and one that will live in your hearts until the day we die.

Ric Flair and Shawn Michaels put on one for the ages and those two, that night, on that stage were in their prime.

I haven't seen more respect in a ring then I did that night from these two as the put on a show as I think of the match, I think "Home" by Chris Daughtry because in my heart we knew it was over at WrestleMania 24 for Ric Flair. We knew it was time for him to go and it was the only way you could for the greatest in the world.

Shawn Michaels is the greatest performer to ever grace a wrestling ring and he should it that night as he brought that match to the next level.

As I watch the match, there was one tear came down my eye as Shawn got up to give Flair the third and last Sweet Chin Music to Flair as the career of the greatest was coming to an end I felt the emotion of so many others watching this as Flair would bow out the right way.

When Shawn looked up and said to Flair "I'm sorry, I love you," that moment and those words meant so much to so many watching because those words were real.

I think it was something that wasn't scripted to say and that what made it so much sadder when it happen.

When Shawn was getting ready to pin Flair the tears from my eyes came down faster than a waterfall because I saw my two favorite wrestlers going at it and one of them retiring the other.

I think of moments that can compare to this one, but I can't think of one that comes close that is a happy one that is sad in some ways.

What this match proved was two things:

1. Shawn Michaels is Mr. WrestleMania for this reason exactly.

2. Ric Flair will always be the "MAN."

When WrestleMania 25 came around I felt that Shawn Michaels should have stopped the Undertaker's streak, but he didn't because the WWE wants someone else to use the win over the Undertaker at WrestleMania as a springboard to the spotlight.

I feel that can turn into a "Ultimate" mistake, but that's for an article that I will be writing later on this week.

Ric Flair is in the middle of a WWE Championship picture that is exactly the opposite as these senseless Championship matches and rivalries, but that is another article later on in the next day or two.

Flair and HBK are two of the greatest, and there is a short list of the greatest.