It’s Time for WWE to Save Kurt Angle from Himself. Again. – Deadspin
October 25, 2017 - WWE
On Saturday night, we went to a uncover from House of Glory, one of a internal eccentric wrestling promotions in New York City. It was a unequivocally fun uncover until an collision in a semifinal match, when Chris Seaton of a New York Wrecking Krew tab group pennyless his femur in a weird accident; he landed wrong doing a moonsault off a tip rope. I’ve seen too many injuries live during indie shows, and this one—Seaton came adult screaming, upheld out, and afterwards woke behind adult again, screaming—was simply a many chilling. The dangers of pro wrestling were fresher in my mind than common going into Sunday night, when WWE was using a annual TLC: Tables, Ladders, and Chairs pay-per-view event.
Most years, WWE has attempted to remove churned gimmicked-up matches out of a show, with one compare for any named arms as good as a eponymous TLC match. In 2014, they even experimented with changing a uncover to “Tables, Ladders, Chairs … and Stairs.” The “stairs match,” thankfully, was left in 2015. The eventuality can be profusion and places absurd final on a talent, so it was lovely when this year’s announced label enclosed only a singular TLC headliner, that would showcase the reunion of The Shield. Said showcase went to ruin when Roman Reigns was sidelined by a viral infection that took out during slightest 3 other performers who live in a Florida panhandle. WWE, in perplexing to save a card, announced that Kurt Angle, now a on-screen ubiquitous manager of a Raw brand, would be Reigns’ replacement.
Angle, for a uninitiated, is flattering most hold together by bolts and handle interjection to, among other injuries, countless neck breaks. His neck issues go behind to his Olympic wrestling days, where he purposefully landed on his conduct to equivocate dropping a point. They worsened once he headed to WWE. Angle has elite neurosurgeon during home in Pittsburgh who does a minimally invasive medicine to repair adult his neck and has finished so countless times; he has never opted for a some-more permanent repair of carrying vertebrae fused together. This would be Angle’s initial compare duration in 7 months as good as his initial in WWE given being dismissed 11 years ago for refusing to go to rehab for his painkiller addiction; to his credit, Angle is now over 4 years solemn after his initial army in treatment. In a interim, Angle wrestled for Impact Wrestling and after took occasional eccentric bookings. In a 8 indie matches after he left Impact in early 2016, he was generally wrestling conservative, matwork-heavy, brief matches that stable his body.
Watching a TLC categorical eventuality was, as summarized previously, a weird knowledge in many ways. But zero about it was foreigner than how Angle looked. He took unequivocally small punishment, with a integrate comparatively protected bumps churned in, and was mostly only there to strike a bad guys with weapons en track to suplexing them. There were moments when it looked like he forgot how to open and tighten folding chairs and ladders for some reason, though questions about either or not this was a good suspicion faded as a compare went on. It seemed like all was good in a universe of Kurt Angle … until it wasn’t.
Just before a finish of a bout, Angle did one of his slight spots with The Miz, where he went to request his ankle tighten and got kicked off, promulgation him by a ropes to a floor. Angle only kind of fell through, not entrance tighten to clearing a ring apron, and landed on a tip of his head. He fast bounced adult and landed on his conduct again before crumpling to a floor. Time stood still for a moment. we suspicion he competence have finally maimed or killed himself in a ring. And afterwards he popped adult and re-entered a compare moments later.
This is a male who once, in 2003, pennyless his neck shortly before WrestleMania, participated in formulation to safely switch his WWE championship to Chris Benoit in a discerning match, afterwards decided to work a large uncover anyway. In that match, a show-closing categorical eventuality with Brock Lesnar, Angle pulled out all a stops; if anything, he worked some-more fast than he customarily did. The compare finished with both wrestlers being hospitalized: Angle with startle from spinal issues and Lesnar for a concussion that he suffered after under-rotating on his finishing pierce off a tip rope. It was a wise finish to a weekend in that Steve Austin, who mislaid a before compare to The Rock, was also hospitalized, with heart palpitations.
But that was afterwards and this is now, and some-more to a indicate Angle is not a full-time wrestler or tighten to it anymore. He has also clearly been holding improved caring of his physique in matches given removing solemn and circuitous down his career. Angle’s past injuries stemmed from a peaceful and even bullheaded foolishness that went all a approach behind to a strange damage in a Olympic trials, and that enfolds a aforementioned WrestleMania 19 match; a successive medicine was totally dismantled with a singular chair shot to a head. What happened—or roughly happened, depending on how we wish to see it—on Sunday was clearly not Angle perplexing to supplement to a match. It was a healthy outcome of a male who is about to spin 49 and has been by over 21 years of steady vital spinal injuries (and knee injuries, and other injuries of attrition) returning cold after poignant time off.
This was not a form of botched pierce that only happens, in short. It’s how it looks when an older, damaged down wrestler tries to go by or over a ropes. That doesn’t always finish with a wrestler alighting on his or her head, though a fact that this one did wasn’t utterly a fluke. Angle looked some-more like an 80 year aged Mae Young holding that strike than he did an even vaguely healthy late career wrestler circuitous things down. There’s a reason for that.
Maybe a compare that’s not on such brief notice would outcome in a most reduction rusty Kurt Angle, to be fair. He unequivocally is a once a lifetime talent, though Angle also has a once in a lifetime story of injuries. Wrestlers with broken necks like Angle’s are always told that they’re one bad strike divided from death; Japan’s Mitsuharu Misawa indeed took that bad strike and died in a ring. If Angle doesn’t have a physique control to save himself on slight moves anymore and wants to take each step to equivocate a identical destiny for himself, he needs to hang adult his boots for good.