With NXT making Atlanta's Center Stage its home for the night, Triple H reflects on the first time he stepped foot in the building, as well as the role Center Stage played in the evolution of sports-entertainment.01/10/2018 - 18:00
John Cena competes in jean shorts for the first time in his WWE career.01/03/2018 - 17:45
WWE Superstars fight through the pain
The operation performed on Cena’s elbow, despite proving to be more complicated than at first believed, is actually common with professional athletes, and Dr. James Andrews is the best sports-related surgeon in the world. Yet that does not take away from the fact that for months, Cena competed injured. The Cenation Leader is known for his refusal to back down, and he fought through the injury for some time before finally agreeing to the procedure.
WWE Superstars are among the finest athletes in the world, but they are still human. Their hard work and dedication can sometimes take its toll, and in an environment filled with high-octane competition, injuries do occur. Some are minor while others are career-threatening, but even injured, WWE Superstars always try to battle through the pain … or, at the very least, finish their match.
They try, but they don’t always succeed, especially when the injury is severe. At Survivor Series 2011, Sin Cara suffered a patella tendon rupture that resulted in his immediate removal from a Traditional Survivor Series Elimination Tag Team Match, and keeping him out of action for nearly six months.
For the next two months leading to his match against “Stone Cold” Steve Austin at WrestleMania XIV, Michaels continued to defend his WWE Championship despite being in excruciating pain. Following his loss to Austin, HBK underwent a career-threatening surgery and retired from active competition, seemingly for good. Four years later, though, a miraculously-recovered Michaels returned to WWE and re-established himself as one of its elite Superstars before retiring for good in 2010 (at the hands of The Undertaker, ironically).
"Stone Cold" Steve Austin
Though the injury was clearly very serious, Austin refused to quit. Once he regained feeling throughout his body, he managed to roll up Hart for the victory. Instead of the customary celebration many Superstars enjoy after winning their first title in WWE, the WWE Hall of Famer had to be helped to his feet and into the locker room following the contest. In fact, Austin was forced out of ring action for months. Though he would return to active competition and become the most popular WWE Superstar of all time, Austin’s injury nagged him the rest of his career. He would eventually have neck surgery in an effort to ease the pain, and effectively retired following his contest with The Rock at WrestleMania XIX in 2003.
In fact, once outside the ring, Triple H attempted to Pedigree Y2J through the announce table, but the maneuver was reversed into the Walls of Jericho. Only after learning of the severity of the injury did the WWE Universe fully realize the resiliency and dedication of The Game, making that particular Walls of Jericho hard to watch again.
The injury would sideline Triple H for eight months, but when he returned in January 2002, the WWE Universe – including his fellow Superstars – had a newfound respect for The Game.
"Cowboy" Bob Orton
Near the end of a match with Jimmy “Superfly” Snuka at War to Settle the Score, Orton was thrown into the corner between the turnbuckles, his arm hitting the steel ring post. Regaining his composure, the WWE Hall of Famer was clearly favoring his left arm and was visibly in a lot of pain. Showing the heart of a true WWE Superstar, however, Orton continued the match in a losing effort.
Following the arm injury, “Cowboy” Bob Orton began wearing a cast. Even as time went on and the injury appeared to have healed, Orton claimed it wasn’t and continued wearing the brace, using it to his advantage whenever he could – and in the process, strong-arming his way into the WWE Hall of Fame.
The Viper had aggravated an old injury and separated his shoulder preparing for his patented maneuver. Rather than having the official call for the end of the match, Orton continued to fight on, escaping to the outside of the ring to regain his composure. Though the use of one arm was gone, The Viper used a bit of ingenuity to prevent himself from tallying a loss. As Orton leaned against the barricade, Edge charged at him with a Spear. WWE’s Apex Predator barely moved out of the way, sending The Rated-R Superstar crashing through the wall. Both Superstars were unable to return to the ring, and the match ended in a double count-out.
Fortunately, the reinjured shoulder wasn’t too severe, and The Viper was able to return to the ring shortly after the event.