6 WWE Superstars who definitely retired too soon

These Superstars should have wrestled much longer than they did
These Superstars should have wrestled much longer than they did
Daniel Wood

This week, Dwayne 'The Rock' Johnson revealed that he had 'quietly retired' from Professional Wrestling during the press rounds for his latest blockbuster film 'Fast and Furious Presents: Hobbs and Shaw'.

'The Rock' is the latest in a long line of Superstars to call time on their in-ring careers and no longer actively compete within the squared circle. However 'The Great One' is almost certainly not done with WWE and will be back.

Read Also: 5 Biggest Questions After The Rock 'Retires' From WWE

In fact, most of the WWE Legends and alumni who call it a day end up returning for one-off specials like the recent RAW reunion, or taking on backstage or other onscreen roles away from actually wrestling.

However, the problem with seeing these legends back in a WWE ring but not actually wrestling is that we, as fans, can't help but wonder, what if they wrestled again? What if they had one more match? This is usually worsened when it seems clear that the Superstar in question is still fairly young and physically able to compete.

With that in mind, let's take a look at the six WWE Superstars who definitely retired too soon, either by choice or through injury.

#6. Dwayne 'The Rock' Johnson

The Rock in his last singles match for WWE against Eric Rowan
The Rock in his last singles match for WWE against Eric Rowan

As we've already mentioned 'The Rock', let's start with 'The People's Champ' himself. He's always been the subject of return rumors, especially around SummerSlam and WrestleMania season. However, with SummerSlam weeks away, 'The Rock' seems to have put a stop to those rumors once and for all by announcing his retirement from wrestling.

"I mean, no. I quietly retired from wrestling because I was lucky enough to have just a really wonderful career and accomplish what I wanted to accomplish, but there's nothing like a live crowd, a live audience, a live microphone as you both know. Plus, I grew up in wrestling. For a lot of you guys that don't know, my grandfather wrestled, my dad as well, my whole family."


But take a look at the trailer for 'The Rock's latest film 'Fast and Furious Presents: Hobbs and Shaw' and the physical condition that he's in and tell me that he isn't capable of wrestling another five years or so.

Obviously it remains to be seen how legitimate 'The Rock's retirement from WWE really is, but if he's serious when he says he's done then its definitely, definitely too soon. Especially as it will mean we won't get the match with Roman Reigns that everyone is clamoring for!

#5. Paige

Paige was set to have a Hall of Fame worthy career, but it was sadly cut short
Paige was set to have a Hall of Fame worthy career, but it was sadly cut short

In some cases the Superstar in question doesn't necessarily make the choice to retire, and instead are forced into it due to a career-ending injury. This is exactly what happened with promising WWE women's division Superstar Paige.

The British starlet, who had subsequently been the subject of a major motion picture 'Fighting With My Family' was a big part of the 'Women's Revolution' and WWE's pivot towards letting the women properly wrestle.


She was NXT Women's Champion and won the Diva's Championship in her first main roster match against AJ Lee and has trail-blazed ever since until a serious injury sidelined her for several months.

Upon making her return, it seemed that big things were in store for Paige, as she formed the 'Absolution' faction, calling up Mandy Rose and Sonya Deville. However, her run was cut short after she suffered an injury at a house show and was advised to no longer wrestle.

This truly is the perfect case of a promising young career being cut short by unfortunate and tragic circumstances. It would have been amazing to see Paige's career unfold in the ring, but thankfully she still works for WWE and after a stint of being SmackDown Live General Manager is now managing the tag-team Kabuki Warriors.

#4. Shawn Michaels

People would love to see Shawn Michaels Vs Dolph Ziggler
People would love to see Shawn Michaels Vs Dolph Ziggler

Okay, so Shawn Michaels has wrestled recently, returning for last year's Saudi Arabian WWE show 'Crown Jewel' when he, alongside Triple H, took on a reunited Kane and Undertaker as the 'Brothers of Destruction'.

Michaels retired from in-ring action in 2010 after a backstage employee reminded him that his time with his son was running out before he'd be eighteen and gone. The aforementioned Crown Jewel match would happen eight years later and would be Michaels' first and only since then.


So, with that in mind, I'm considering 'The Heartbreak Kid' still retired and that is definitely a bummer because there's certainly no denying that he still has his ring-legs under him and can still hit a decent Super Kick.

People thought he might come back for SummerSlam after Dolph Ziggler insulted him and Super Kicked him on SmackDown Live and ever since he started becoming publicly involved with NXT people have been hoping for a Shawn Michaels Vs. Johnny Gargano match.

So, it's clear that although Michaels might be done himself, the WWE Universe certainly would love to see him wrestle a few more times!

#3. Edge

Edge was at the top of WWE when he was forced to retire
Edge was at the top of WWE when he was forced to retire

Edge is another Superstar, who like Paige, was cut short during their prime by a potentially life threatening injury that forced him to retire from in-ring action. His retirement speech remains one of the most out-of-the-blue and emotional moments to take place inside a WWE ring.


It was made even worse by the fact that at WrestleMania XXVII, Edge successfully defended his World Heavyweight Championship against Alberto Del Rio, meaning that he was forced to retire as the reigning and record-breaking Heavyweight Champion.

Edge has been involved with WWE on-and-off ever since, hosting both his own podcast talk show and a WWE Network comedy series, both with his former tag-team partner Christian, as well as making the odd guest appearance. His most recent and memorable one being to confront Becky Lynch about her behavior.

Now, I'm not advocating that Edge return to the ring as cervical spinal stenosis is a very serious injury and should be taken seriously. However, it's hard not to feel short-changed at Edge's career being cut short right when he was at the top and wonder what might've been.

#2. Sting

Sting should've had a much longer and more historic run for WWE
Sting should've had a much longer and more historic run for WWE

There was so much build-up and so much anticipation for Sting's debut in the WWE and when it finally happened it was a huge, and I mean huge, deal. Finally we were going to get all of the dream Sting matches no-one believed would happen inside of a WWE ring.

What happened next was incredibly underwhelming, but through no-one's particular fault as Sting only had two PPV matches before the same cervical spinal stenosis that had put Edge out of commission had also forced him to retire as well.


The first was against Triple H at WrestleMania in a losing effort and the second was for the WWE World Heavyweight Title against Seth Rollins, again in a losing effort. During the Rollins match, Sting suffered a neck injury, but was able to finish the fight. Shortly afterwards he was forced to retire.

This was almost certainly too soon because it meant that we didn't get to see Sting win a high-profile match or feud and it also meant that we didn't get the once-in-a-lifetime dream match of Sting Vs. Undertaker. A match so wanted that even now people cling on to hope that it'll happen.

#1. Stone Cold Steve Austin

If Goldberg can return, why not Stone Cold?
If Goldberg can return, why not Stone Cold?

You all saw Stone Cold Steve Austin's promo at the Raw Reunion a few weeks ago and witnessed the massive, massive pop the 'Texas Rattlesnake' received to close out that episode of Monday Night Raw. If that alone isn't enough to convince you that Austin retired too soon, then I don't know what to tell you.


Sure Austin was yet another wrestler to call it a day because he was advised to by doctors otherwise he might accidentally paralyze himself after wrestling with injuries for several years and not seeking medical help for them. But, it would definitely be amazing to see one of the best in the business (arguably the best ever) return to the ring just one last time.

And that's certainly what thousands of other people think, with Austin having just 'one more match' being brought up regularly despite being something that he shoots down as a possibility regularly!

Who else in WWE do you feel retired way too soon? Share your ideas in the comments down below!

Edited by Kevin C. Sullivan


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