February 9, 2011
Pierre-Carl Ouellet retires
By PATRIC LAPRADE - SLAM! Wrestling
On Tuesday, three-time WWE World tag team champion Pierre-Carl Ouellet announced his retirement from professional wrestling on a Montreal radio station. Ironically, his long-time partner in the Quebecers tag team, Jacques Rougeau Jr., has announced his retirement tour for this summer as well.
It does bring to mind October 21, 1994, when Rougeau wrestled Ouellet in the main event of a WWF show in a near sold-out Montreal Forum in what was built as Rougeau's retirement match. History tells us that Rougeau came out of retirement two years later.
But Ouellet vows that he is indeed done.
"I wrestled in more than 30 countries, on all five continents. I was three-time WWE tag team champion, I've wrestled against the best of my era and for all the major promotions," Ouellet told SLAM! Wrestling when discussing the end to his 25-year career. "When you choose wrestling as your career, you don't have space for anything else in your life. Wrestling becomes your life. But after a while, you realize that there is more than wrestling. I have other projects I want to work on, but I couldn't invest myself 100% in those with wrestling still around.
Ouellet, 43, initially called it quits during an interview on the biggest sports radio station in Quebec, CKAC. It is in some ways the end of an era for Quebec wrestling, because with this announcement, Sylvain Grenier becomes the very last Quebec male wrestler still active to have performed on a regular basis for WWE.
Carl Ouellet started wrestling professionally around 1987. After touring in Europe and South Africa, he went to Puerto Rico in 1993 where he met Jacques Rougeau Jr. Impressed by the young French Canadian kid, Rougeau saw the potential that teaming with him could have. Later that year, Rougeau and Ouellet united as The Quebecers. After Jacques' retirement match, Ouellet came back to the WWF under the pirate-inspired Jean-Pierre Lafitte gimmick. That's also when he had his problems with Kevin Nash and Shawn Michaels, leading to his departure in 1995.
In the years that followed, he worked for WCW, went back shortly for WWF, worked in Memphis, ECW, Japan and TNA before he settled down on the Quebec indy scene in 2003. In 2005, he did work several months for IWA in Puerto Rico before taking a job as commentator for the French version of TNA Impact. But in 2007, he left everything behind him and moved to England where he tried to get another shot at the WWE roster. He had a few dark matches, but wasn't hired back.
His last high profile match happened at an IWS show in May of 2009, when he faced Kevin Nash for the first time in nearly 15 years, ending their long-lasting feud. His final match was a year later, at ToW, against TNA's Desmond Wolfe.
"I would like to thank everyone I worked with and not only the workers, but also the referees, the ring crews, the marketing people, all the staff from every promotion I had the chance to work for," said Ouellet. "And last but not least, I would like to thank all the fans who supported me and who followed my career. You guys are awesome!"
Patric Laprade has been involved on the Quebec indy scene for a decade, mainly as an announcer and writer. He is currently in the process of writing a book on the history of Quebec wrestling -- www.quebecwrestling.ca. He can be reached at email@example.com or on his Facebook page.