Originally posted by jwrestle Also, he's starting to make me feel cheap & dirty about Wrestlemaina 24 against HBK. I saw it live & its starting to feel very meaningless.
I saw it live too and Flair rendered it meaningless the day he debuted in TNA. And yet, can you blame him for coming back? Look at his life. He desperately needs money. And even beyond his financial needs, can you blame Flair for wanting to wrestle? Putting on his gear, getting in that ring, and Flair flopping around is a world he's most familiar with and is friendliest to him. It must be a welcome respite from the terrible shambles of his real life. It's sad.
In April 2005, the IRS began to seize Fliehr's WWE earnings to pay back taxes.
I wonder how long the IRS was snooping around and seizing Flair's earnings to pay back taxes. I also can't help but wonder if concerns that the IRS might just blow the "They're independent contractors, and not employees" bit out of the water from getting into that might've led some people in WWE management to want Flair gone from active competition from the fed... though he didn't actually "retire" until WM XXIV. Just kinda makes a conspiracy theorist wonder.
Edit 1 - I'll concede that the stuff from 1998 with the Bischoff suit sounds like it was taken directly from court pleadings, as it never touches on Flair's story that he'd asked for time off for Reid's wrestling tournament, supposedly gotten it, and then had it changed at the last minute. But this is the one part that I think the author kinda missed the bus and might not have found the whole story. (End of Edit 1)
But shoot, man, after this... I want to reset my car loan payments so everything gets paid on the first day of the month, when I get my paycheck. This is just... wow.
(edited by FLRockAndLaw on 25.8.11 1328) Why yes, I am both a musician and a lawyer. Thanks for asking. :)
Not including the context of Flair's firing from WCW in 1991 and suspension in 1998, which are universally famous wrestling stories, kind of belie the idea that this work consisted of more than spending a day at the courthouse. It could be argued that the details aren't pertinent for the purposes of this rap sheet. But I think a more humanistic story would be even sadder, because then you're talking about
- the walk-back on his unprecedented retirement ceremony. - the fact that his WWE contract didn't expire in 2009, he quit his contracted ambassador gig because it was preventing him from making more outside deals for cash. - the story about Vince McMahon himself loaning him money for the back taxes thing. - his psychological problems that he talked about in his book about crises of confidence that sort of frame his whole career and inability to give it up, - along with the idea that his parents were so frugal during his childhood that his philosophy has been about living in excess for himself and his own children.
Originally posted by lotjxI just don't understand the need for this. Then again, this is Bill Simmons' site, so I am not shocked.
I don't understand that comment. On one hand people want wrestling to be relevant on the other they'll get offended if they don't like the way wrestling or wrestlers are portrayed. It's no different than running a story of Antoine Walker's financial failures, or Mike Tyson's.
If anything I thought the writer, Shane Ryan, took it easy on Flair. It's very detailed, but after reading it I still went away with the feeling of poor Ric Flair. If the guy just paid his friggin taxes like most other athletes half to two thirds of his money problems wouldn't exist.
This didn't even touch on the tax issues Flair touches on in his book during his first NWA Title reign where he almost became Jim Crockett's indentured servant for a few years because he bailed him out of IRS problems. You would think after getting hit by the IRS once, twice, ten times, he'd learn to maybe pay his taxes.
One of my problem is relevancy. Flair hasn't been a major star since his Mania match with HBK. Even his TNA debut was pretty low key compared to Hogan. He has really been a second tier player even in TNA. So, it really makes no sense to go after Flair now unless it was done to appease Bill Simmons' wrestling fandom on the site.
The other problem I have is this really a surprise? No. Flair's book outlines a good chunk of his problems. As the author states all of this free to the public so there is no real bombshells here. He freely admits to being terrible with money. So, I am not surprised, what I am surprised is the length of this thing. It has three different sections and reads like the Bible. I got through the first section and just skimmed about. It just seems more like a smear job then it is a profile piece or even a investigative piece.
Lord knows Flair is not perfect and he never portrays himself as that in any medium when talking about his past. So, what is really the point of all this? Flair isn't running for office or even viewed as a role model or as well known as he once was. So, I am trying to figure out why this site decided to spend this much time and space on him. It just seems weird.
The Wee Baby Sheamus.
Twitter: @realjoecarfley its a bit more toned down there. A bit.
Flair is arguably one of the five major stars, all time, in American Professional Wrestling. He's almost always relevant, regardless of his position on the card or the angle being run. I also don't see this as an attempt to "go after Flair". It's a piece that was written to show how fragile human nature is, even in a business where the performers are painted as superhuman.
I also never read Flair's book. He's an interesting person and a great performer, but wrestling books just aren't my thing. As such, there were some real bombshells there for me at least. It's length was too short for me. I wanted more exposition on certain points, more stories behind the events described, more background on some of the key people. I guess I should read that book. And it's definitely not a smear piece. Especially considering all of it is true. If anything, I agree with BigDaddyLoco. I felt sorry for Flair at the end. Skim harder next time.
Again, Flair has been a very prominent player for over three decades. It would be just as poignant to write a piece about Hogan, Austin, Savage, etc...
Look, I hate Grantland as much as the next person. It's a poorly edited website with very few interesting pieces, IMO. And that Carles person is a terrible writer. I can't wrap my head around the fact that he gets paid to write for a high profile website. That being said, I enjoyed this piece. I wanted more, but I'm sure he had a word limit. Because of that, I felt it kind of just dropped off the cliff at the end. There was no ending, just a quote that tried to be the thought provoking thesis but failed.
I had to kind of let this sink in a day or so, but that story about Johnny Grunge was so very sad. I was sad that his life ended like that, after knowing that many times he entertained me very much. Whatever else, it's a sad, sad tale.