Ric Flair has severed ties with WWE, negotiated a release with the company quietly over the last few weeks. Word of Flair's new-found freedom broke on Sunday afternoon, when his agents at The Gillespie Agency started calling wrestling and convention promoters throughout the United States to put together appearance deals for Flair.
An email was sent out by the agency during the afternoon which read "Ric Flair is no longer under contract with WWE. It was a friendly parting which will allow Ric to pursue things that were rejected by WWE in the past. And it will mean a more streamlined process than ever before. Just you guys and me and Ric. Let’s pull something together and make some money!"
WWE had prevented Flair from appearing at several functions, shows, and conventions over the past few months. WWE Chairman Vince McMahon was said to insist that Flair not appear in a wrestling ring for anyone else, which the WWE boss felt was Flair lowering his value for a potential big time match as a special referee or guest manager.
Later in the day, Flair himself released a statement through the Gillespie Agency, saying
"WWE and I parted on the best of terms. This gives me the chance to pursue new opportunities...corporate speaking engagements, product sponsorships, autograph shows for my loyal fans (who made me what I am today) and film and television roles. My agent and I are very excited about what the future holds!"
WWE, which just released a Flair DVD, finally broke its silence early last evening when it posted on its official website a simple two sentence notice.
"WWE and Hall of Famer Ric Flair have mutually agreed to contractually part ways," the WWE Internet site stated matter-of-factly, "After an extraordinary career Ric has chosen to pursue opportunities outside of WWE."
More on the Flair situation available at http://www.wrestlingnewsdesk.com/WND/the_news/wrestling/breaking_news%3a_ric_flair_contractually_parts_ways_with_wwe_200808021778.htm