On April 11, 2011 — five years ago today, if you’re reading this on Monday — WWE Hall of Famer Edge announced that he was retiring from pro wrestling. Yes, it’s been five years. Not sure if that constitutes a, “You’re getting older and the passage of time is unstoppable” joke, but it doesn’t feel like it’s been that long.
This above speech is from that night’s episode of Raw, with Edge talking about his career and the reality of wrestling, and how an MRI test result was forcing him to step away from the thing he loved most in the world. Edge’s issues were from a previous neck injury and a cervical vertebral fusion. He felt numbness in his arms and it was diagnosed as cervical spinal stenosis, the same diagnosis that recently forced WCW legend Sting into retirement. If Edge had continued to compete, he’d be at risk of death, neck-down paralysis and any number of horrible conclusions.
Edge relinquished the World Heavyweight Championship that night, retiring as World Champ, and a year later got inducted into the Hall of Fame; 7 World Heavyweight Championships, 4 WWE Championships, 14 tag titles, 5 Intercontinental Championship reigns, a U.S. title reign, 2 Money in the Bank cash-ins, a Royal Rumble win, King of the Ring, 2 Slammy Awards … hell, he even won a Bragging Rights trophy. You can’t get a career much better than that.