This is the continuation of an article, stemming from a Jerry Lawler heart attack.
• Jerry The King Lawler, who along with his duties as a broadcaster on Raw and pay-per-views, maintained a schedule of wrestling and appearance dates for a variety of companies.
WWE occasionally uses the WWE Hall of Famer in the ring at events such as Raw on Sept. 10. Fans love nostalgia. However, what happened to Lawler (even though it didn’t happen in the ring) may lead promoters and creative team members to think twice before booking older stars in matches.
“It is the nature of being a wrestler and performer to always pursue opportunities to make money and perform,” former WWE writer Court Bauer said.
“Whether it’s a gimmick battle royal at WrestleMania or a big pay day at an independent event, there’s always going to be temptation. It’s the wrestling company that must resist temptation, and WWE I am sure now more than ever will be very sensitive to this issue and judicious with how they utilize guys getting up there in age.
“The nature of a promoter is such that they make decisions out of convenience and greed. Thusly, I believe you can’t rely on them to be proactive with the well being of talent. They will always be seduced by making that dream match or unique special attraction showcasing a legend. It’s been going on for decades.
“Fortunately, most reputable arenas, such as Madison Square Garden and [Fort Lauderdale] War Memorial Auditorium require per their contracts with event operators that you have medical technicians and an ambulance present for your events. In states where wrestling is still regulated, such as New York, talent is required to obtain a license and much go through a process. This is a great thing, and it could be frankly enhanced.”
Bauer brings up that this isn’t the first time something like this has happened in WWE. Ricky The Dragon Steamboat, who had participated in WWE matches, was hospitalized for a brain aneurism two years ago.
“…And Bret ‘Hitman’ Hart realistically risked neurological trauma by wrestling Vince McMahon at WrestleMania  as he cannot take any shots to the head,” Bauer said.
“They crafted a great match that avoided that, but all you need is one slip up, and Bret could’ve been in a precarious situation. Obviously, that WrestleMania wasn’t the last time Bret engaged in a physical exchange with other talent in WWE. You really are playing with fire in these situations.
“Operators of wrestling companies have to be judicious in their utilization of talent and realistic about the risk versus the reward. You cannot be naive or conveniently passive when talent 50 plus years of age says they are ready to go. It’s that simple.”
Once wrestling is in your blood, it’s hard to leave it. WWE Hall of Famer Dory Funk Jr., who debuted in 1963, shares a passion for the business with so many of his colleagues of all ages.
“As Mad Dog Vachon once said, ‘You must love this business,’” Funk Jr. quoted. “Would it be hard for you to stop writing? There is no bigger thrill than to see wrestlers you have had a part in their training appear on Monday Night Raw, TNA or hear about their success overseas.
“For that matter, there is no thrill like I had the privilege so many times of performing for one hour for thousands of fans and millions on television and feeling the response of my opponent and that of the fans in attendance. I am Blessed.