It was a surreal moment on Monday Night Raw this week to see Bob Backlund walk down the ramp, looking like he stepped out of the year 1982, to take on Heath Slater in a legends confrontation (I’m pretty sure there was never an official bell for a match).
Backlund, who is almost 63, was in incredible shape for a guy that age. I give him credit, because I was never under the impression Backlund used steroids, as he was dedicated to his training and conditioning, and it looks like he’s kept up with it. Even though he doesn’t come across like a large guy, having seen Backlund walk by me at Orlando Airport, he is big and has good genetics.
Anyway, on Raw, Backlund got in the ring and started doing mannerisms that many of us who saw him wrestle in his heyday will remember, including his quad stretches. He got Slater in the crossface chicken wing, which was one of his signature moves from his days as WWF Heavyweight Champion.
After the match, WWE.com interviewed Backlund, which made me laugh because as always, Backlund was and is a terrible, straight-laced promo man. It was vintage Backlund to be sure.
Still, it was great to see Backlund back in a WWE ring for a brief moment. Let’s hope this appearance leads to a nomination in the WWE Hall of Fame.