Roman Reigns' leukemia announcement took the world by surprise last year in October 2018. Up to that point, everything seemed fine. He was the reigning, defending Universal Champion and was the man to carry the title full-time going forward.
Unfortunately, his reign would end in just two months as he was forced to vacate it due to the re-emergence of his leukemia (something that very few knew he had up until that point). Ric Flair has been one of Roman Reigns' most consistent advocates and supporters for a long time and understandably, he was taken aback by the announcement. He told Wrestling Inc:
"It's like when Roman came out and told the world that he had leukemia. I was just there the week before and I never heard anything about it. I was like, 'Holy Christ. How do I not know this?'"
He said that WWE hardly had two days to prepare and set up the announcements as he revealed the bloodwork had come back the Tuesday before SmackDown:
"The bloodwork had come back on Roman. It was that fast and they had a couple of days [to set up his Raw announcement]. But look at him now. Up and running and an incredible gift of the look. He's got everything you need in wrestling."
He went on to praise Reigns for all the charity work that he does:
"With your health, I take all of that stuff really seriously because I've dealt with it enough. Not cancer, but I've been in a position where nothing was guaranteed. I tell him all the time – because he does commercials for charities – with him doing them they become sentimental. It's really good and coming from him, it's very special."
Ric Flair would undoubtedly have been affected by the announcement, especially since Reigns is relatively young. The sad reality is that it has shortened Reigns' in-ring career drastically and he has been open about the fact that he doesn't have more than 2-5 years left as an in-ring performer. When it's all said and done, he said that he plans to transition into Hollywood.