The following are highlights of a new Grantland interview with “The Icon” Sting:
How does it feel to finally be a part of WWE?
It’s an honor. It’s something I always hoped I could do — to somehow or another be a part of the WWE family in some capacity. And here I am.
You’re going to be in the new WWE2K15 game, but fans are salivating at the idea of you actually being on WWE television. Are there any plans for you to be onscreen?
I’ll just say that I’m all in and very willing to participate. Believe me.
Flair shared an onscreen moment on Monday with John Cena. I imagine they have a relationship similar to the one he had with you. Who are your favorite guys of the current generation?
I’m a strange breed. When I got into the business I really didn’t know anything about wrestling. I never watched wrestling on TV because we didn’t have it in the area of Southern California where I grew up. So it’s amazing that I even ended up wrestling. I still don’t watch a whole lot. Thirty years and I never really watched anything — I never even watched myself. I’m just now at a place where I’m like, “Let me start to learn some of these newer guys coming up.” I always heard that when John Cena started, a lot of people looked at him as the new Sting. That was flattering. As far as some of the new guys, I love the look of Roman Reigns and I think he has all the ability in the world. Daniel Bryan, I’ve seen him perform. Bray Wyatt, I’ve seen him. Unreal what they do.
Fans have been dreaming of a match between you and the Undertaker for the past 10-plus years. I’m sure you hear it all the time. Is that something you’ve thought about?
Absolutely. I would love to have that match. I think for wrestling fans it’s a dream match, but really it’s been a dream match of mine for a long time, as well. I know that the streak was taken away by Brock Lesnar at this last WrestleMania, but I hope [Undertaker]’s not done. I don’t believe he is. And if he is going to be around, I’m hoping for an opportunity.
A lot of fans believed your promo commercial was the best segment on Raw this past Monday.
One of the interesting things I read about the promo video was that for anybody who thought the generational gap would be not in Sting’s favor, well, we can put that to rest. The way the crowd reacted was amazing — and even the younger kids who don’t know who I am. The painted face, that video — I’m the sort of guy who’s really hard to please, but when I saw that video, with the violins playing, it was great.
I heard that when WWE bought WCW back in 2001, you were worried about how WWE would position you and that’s why you never came over. Is that true?
Honestly, back then I probably did make rumblings like that. But the truth is that I had a contract with AOL/Time Warner. WWE didn’t assume those. I had 18 months left on that contract, and AOL had to pay me the money they owed me, and they did. I also did an audit for merchandise and got another lump of money there. After 18 months, I had a conversation with Vince. Long story short, when I spoke with Vince it was great, then when the attorneys got involved it wasn’t so great. It never materialized. I let it go at that point.
Now that you have a relationship with WWE, do you regret not signing with the company sooner?
Yeah, you know what they say about hindsight. I can look back now and wonder why I didn’t do this earlier. But it is what it is, and I’m excited right now. It’s like Vince used to say every time I came close to signing but never did: “Don’t forget to cross your t’s and dot your i’s, and someday we’ll do business together.” And here we are. It’s a video game, but that’s for starters, and we’ll see how it develops from here. I’m glad it turned out the way it did.
How much more in-ring action do you have in you?
One more match. That’s what I’m hoping to do, and I’d like it to be Taker, and then I’ll hang it up.
Check out the complete interview at Grantland.com.
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