It's been eight years since Shawn Michaels wrestled his last match in the WWE, and so far, he's been a man of his word as far as his retirement is concerned. Unlike other "retired" wrestlers who make one-off in-ring comebacks for the sake of nostalgia, the "Heartbreak Kid" has stayed retired since his loss to The Undertaker at WrestleMania XXVI in 2010. But it would seem that Michaels is now softening his stance on the issue, as suggested by comments he made in a recent interview.
Speaking to Sky Sports, Michaels said that he is now willing to consider making a one-time return to in-ring competition, but as he is turning 53 next month, he stressed that fans shouldn't expect him to be in the same physical shape, or expect the same high quality of matches they got prior to his 2010 retirement. As noted by WrestlingNews.co, Michaels currently works as a coach at the WWE Performance Center and a producer for WWE's NXT developmental promotion. He also makes occasional appearances on WWE television programs and pay-per-views, albeit in non-wrestling roles.
"I've been retired for eight years now and when it got to the five-year mark, I thought people would start asking me but they just kind of stopped," said Michaels.
"I think it's one of those that you would never say never about, and if it was just for a one-off, then it's something that I would take a look at."Shawn Michaels also told Sky Sports about the conditions that need to be in place for a possible in-ring return, noting that such a comeback has to be "done the right way," and only for one match and not part of a longer program.
"It could be possible, but people would have to accept they wouldn't be getting the Showstopper, Mr. WrestleMania, and that I'm 52-years-old now."Talking about potential opponents he would have liked to face had he still been in the same physical shape he was 10 years ago, Shawn Michaels listed a few names from WWE's current main and developmental rosters — AJ Styles, Daniel Bryan, and Johnny Gargano. The mention of Styles' name is notable, as it was heavily rumored toward the end of 2016 that Styles and Michaels would be facing each other at the 2017 Royal Rumble, which was held in the latter's hometown of San Antonio. These rumors, however, were shut down by Michaels, who later on told multiple publications, including the Daily Mirror, that he wanted to honor the terms of his retirement.
Although the above matchups could be interesting ones for fans looking forward to seeing him back in the ring, Shawn Michaels concluded his interview with Sky Sports by laying down one final condition for a possible return — it'll have to be a tag team match where he teams with longtime best friend and D-Generation X stablemate Triple H, one that would allow him to "do a few crotch chops and have some fun."