Ric Flair has named one legendary WWE Hall of Famer who was a huge influence on his career.
When wrestling fans think of Ric Flair and Dusty Rhodes, they think about the legendary rivalry they had throughout the NWA in the 1980s. Ric Flair is regarded as perhaps the greatest wrestler of all time who was best known as a heel while Dusty is one of the most beloved babyfaces of all time.
What some fans might not know is that Flair looked up to Dusty in a big way, especially when Flair was just starting in the pro wrestling business. Ric Flair is 74 years old and started wrestling in 1972 while the late, great Dusty Rhodes was four years older than Ric and started wrestling in 1967.
During an appearance on Busted Open Radio, Flair revealed that Dusty was his biggest inspiration in pro wrestling.
“The guy that influenced me the most when I was breaking in? Dusty Rhodes. I can answer without even thinking. I fell in love with The Dream. I wanted to be his brother, I wanted to be ‘Ramblin’ Ricky Rhodes.'”
Flair also spoke about the time when he drove Dusty and Dick Murdoch to the airport.
“I was such a mark for Rhodes and Murdoch, right, so they told me one time ‘Listen, we’re gonna be on Johnny Carson tonight, take us to the airport. But don’t tell anybody!’ So, I took ’em to the airport and I went home and told my wife.”
“I loved them both. I watched that damn Johnny Carson for an hour and a half, that’s what kind of a mark I was for them.”
As it turns out, Ric revealed that Dusty and Murdoch tricked The Nature Boy because their actual destination was Honolulu, Hawaii and not the Tonight Show in Los Angeles. They just needed a ride to the airport, so they used Ric to get them there.
Ric Flair Is All Elite
Dusty Rhodes was one of Flair’s biggest rivals in pro wrestling and so is Sting. In November 2023, Ric Flair signed a multi-year deal with AEW that will see him support his good friend Sting going into The Stinger’s retirement match at Revolution on March 3rd.
Flair has also said he’ll remain in AEW after Sting is retired too.