AS I SEE IT: A Scary Night
Pro Wrestling: Between the Sheets
“Wrestling is fake.”
Do you go see The Avengers and leave saying, “That was fake.” Do you watch your favorite TV show and complain how it’s scripted? Odds are you don’t.
Don’t hate on wrestling because outcomes are predetermined…..The risk we take is real. The falls we take are real. The pain we wake up to and deal with for the hard working fan that pays to be entertained is real.
Wrestling is live action theater and is beautiful when done right. Don’t dismiss it because you don’t get it.
These 2015 comments from David Starr came up on my Facebook feed this past week. They were one more wrestler reminding fans to respect what goes on in the ring.
But after last night, those comments could be viewed in a whole new light.
Enzo Amore was injured in a frightening moment early on last night’s Payback PPV. Amore and Colin Cassidy were in the opener against The Vaudevillians, set to determine the number one contender for The New Day’s WWE Tag Team Titles. But the match was stopped only minutes in, after Amore went to slide through the ropes. But his hand caught the bottom rope, whip-lashing his head violently on the canvas. Amore went down on the floor unconscious with eyes wide open, laying on the arena floor.
The referee checked on him, and immediately threw up the X hand signal, meaning there was a legitimate injury and immediately stopped the match. Amore was transported to a local hospital and underwent
numerous tests. During the show, Michael Cole gave several updates and noted Amore was able to move his extremities, and talk to the medical staff. He was actually released from the hospital before the pay-per-view was over, and amazingly, posted on his Twitter in full character (in a hospital gown). In the end, Amore was left with no more than a concussion
The injury was frightening to watch, made worse in some ways by the replays of the incident. I can only assume WWE was doing it to make clear it what happened was a legitimate injury. There’s no way to know if WWE was actually aware he was conscious and able to move his limbs or not before showing replays. If not, it shows questionable taste.
This injury came out…relatively…OK. But that isn’t always the case…at all.
On March 20, 2015, Perro Aguayo Jr. died in a Tijuana hospital, after injuries he suffered in the ring during a tag team match. The match, between Aguayo Jr., and TJ Perkins (TNA’s Manik) vs. Rey Mysterio, Jr. and Xtreme Tiger (TNA’s Tigre Uno) continued as Aguayo Jr., stayed motionless hanging on the ropes as he was about to get a 619. Mysterio mid-flight corrected, seeing something was wrong, and deliberately overshot a double 619 as Perkins moved and he went over Aguayo Jr. Konnan tried to revive him at ringside as the match went on.
There’s footage straight from TV Azteca Baja California that shows the latter part of the match in professional quality. It clearly shows Perro Aguayo’s head hitting the apron as he was thrown out of the ring. Aguayo came back into the ring, possibly concussed or already injured when he took the bump to the floor, worsened it by getting into the ring; was then hit into the ropes in an odd way, and appears to have had his neck whiplashed.
Rather than embed it, I’ll link it, so those who choose to view to video can do so. Bottom line, the footage is graphic, and shows Aguayo’s death. If you wish to view it, go here.
My point is that what happened to Amore was eerily reminiscent of the Aguayo death. While one was a broken neck, and this a concussion, both involved incidents with the ring ropes.
Next time you’re at a show, please think before yelling “fake” or “this match sucks” or something like that, think again. Think about the cost of what wrestlers do every single time they enter a ring. All too often the worst injuries happen from the most routine spots, not violent death match spots, not crazy mind-blowing high spots. Hayabusa broke his neck doing a moonsault he’d done ten thousand times before. Darren Drozdov had his neck broken in 1999, and became a quadriplegic, in a spot that D-Lo Brown had done many times before.
Take the time to think before you yell.
Until next time…