Before this past Sunday’s Royal Rumble, there were some who suggested that Kurt Angle – who is currently wrapping up his retirement tour with Impact Wrestling – may appear as a surprise entrant in the Royal Rumble match. Of course, the idea that Angle would return to WWE at the Royal Rumble pay-per-view seemed a bit far-fetched, especially considering that he still had a few dates left with Impact Wrestling.
Angle, 47, has expressed his desire to return to WWE and have at least one more match before going into the WWE Hall of Fame. He has named Daniel Bryan as the guy he wants to get in the ring with if he ever returns to WWE. However, he is also unsure if WWE will ever allow him to come back to their organization to be an active member of their talent roster.
When Angle left WWE in 2006, he was dealing with a good deal of physical and substance abuse issues. In the subsequent years, those issues only got worse, and he was arrested four times for DUI’s from 2008 to 2013. But, according to Angle, he’s been completely clean for almost three years now.
In a recent interview with Sports Illustrated, Angle explained why he thinks WWE is hesitant to bring him back, saying that, due to the fact that they’re a publicly traded company, they have to be careful about who they hire. WWE might not want to take a risk on someone who has had very public substance abuse issues in the past because they’re worried that something catastrophic would happen to that person if they relapsed while being an active member of their roster.
Angle also said that he’s unsure that WWE will ever allow him to come back and wrestle for them, and his return to the company, whenever it happens, would just include a WWE Hall of Fame induction.
“Is it possible I go back to WWE somewhere along the lines? Of course. I think I’ll end up in the Hall of Fame, but I just don’t know if WWE will ever want me to wrestle again. It’s up to them, and it’s up to me. I don’t know what I’m going to do. But if I do decide to do it, it would be nice. A lot of people would like to see it, so we’ll see what happens.”
While Angle would like to return to WWE at some point, he is also considering stepping into the cage for a mixed-martial-arts fight.
Angle, who won an Olympic gold medal in 1996, has always expressed interest in doing at least one MMA fight, and with Bellator MMA being a place where guys who are in Angle’s age group are fighting, he’s strongly considering getting inside the cage and seeing what he can do against a guy like Kimbo Slice.
During his appearance on The Roman Show, Angle talked about what the chances of him fighting were, saying that if he were to fight, it would be against someone who is around the same age as him. He named Ken Shamrock, Kimbo Slice, Royce Gracie, and Dan Severn as potential opponents.
“When it comes down to it look, I am 47 years old. Kenny (Shamrock) and (Royce) Gracie are in their early 50’s, Dan Severn is in his early mid-50s. Of course, I am not going to wrestle or fight someone in his prime. It’s not going to happen. It will be one of the older guys. But it will be a hell of fight whether it’s Kimbo Slice, Ken Shamrock, Dan Severn or who ever it is or even Royce Gracie. But if I do decide it will be with a Hall of Famer not someone in their prime.”
Royce Gracie and Ken Shamrock are set to fight each other for the third time at February’s Bellator 149 show in Houston, Texas, and Angle will be there to do commentary. The last time Angle was at a Bellator event to do commentary, he strongly teased a fight with Ken Shamrock, so if Shamrock ends up winning, Bellator may end up announcing Angle vs. Shamrock for a future show.
Kimbo Slice is also set to fight on the Bellator 149 card, so if Kimbo ends up walking away with a victory, Bellator could tease Angle vs. Kimbo as well, which may be the best match up for the former WWE and TNA World Champion.
(Featured image via Impact Wrestling)