When Shawn Michaels lost his career-threatening match against The Undertaker at WrestleMania XXVI, he made a point break the trend of wrestlers going back on their retirements and decided to officially stop competing inside the squared circle. And for more than eight years he stayed true to that promise, even when major comeback matches were pitched his way. However Michaels finally laced up the boots one more time in November 2018 when he teamed with Triple H as D-Generation X to take on the Brothers of Destruction at the Crown Jewel event in Saudi Arabia.
Michaels recently appeared on the Challenge Mania podcast and, when asked about Crown Jewel, he said he personally felt like the match didn't "count" as a comeback.
"... It's not a WrestleMania, it's not a this, it's not a... to me it wasn't coming back as the Heartbreak Kid. It was a tag [team match]. I know that's not the same, and I know nobody will understand it, but in my mind, it was like a glorified house show, a live event... I don't mean that to be intellectually insulting to the wrestling fan, but in my mind, it was just so not the same," Michaels said.
He then elaborated on why he did the match in the first place.
"I got asked. It was almost like, as a favor [laughs]. And it was totally just, Hunter and I [did] the DX thing, a tag match," Michaels said. "None of that felt like — it felt like a totally separate entity to me than the other. And that's why I felt okay doing it. And the thing is, it was done with the intent of again, being a nice little fun thing to do. And I can't say that it turned out to be all that fun. It was okay, and it was great being out there with those guys. But again, it was just one of those things that you sorta do because you're a company dude and you go, 'Oh alright, you know, I'll do this' and it's separate and all that. To me it just sort of lives out there on its own."
Michaels was inducted into the WWE Hall of Fame for the second time back in April as a member of DX. Along with taking up a career in acting, Michaels has spent the past few years as one of the trainers at the WWE Performance Center.