Last month at AEW Grand Slam, Jon Moxley suffered a concussion while wrestling Rey Fenix for the AEW International Championship. Though he has since returned to television, the injury kept Moxley on the shelf for over a month. Now, the AEW star is speaking out regarding the treatment of concussions in professional wrestling. During a conversation with The Messenger, Moxley revealed that he suffered the concussion just 30 seconds into the match, spending the rest of the 11-minute match in a daze.
“I just kept getting progressively more lost and couldn’t figure out where the f— I was,” Moxley said. “Then I had this moment of clarity, ‘Oh, I’m f—ed up. I gotta get the f— out of here.”
Before the match came to a close, the decision was made to put the title on Fenix. Initially, Moxley was meant to retain, having just captured the International Championship from Orange Cassidy. After discussing his recovery, the former AEW World Champion acknowledged that concussions were a touchy subject before laying out his argument for changing the way these injuries are handled in wrestling.
“Maybe a really experienced wrestler and a really experienced doctor, who are trained to see signs of that sh–, are watching it on a separate feed,” Moxley continued. “The doctor and wrestler are completely untethered to the creative portion of it. … They have no idea nor any interest in what the story is, who wins, who loses, or how long it’s supposed to go.”
With a doctor and a trained wrestler working together, Moxley argues that it would be easier to determine whether a performer is actually injured or is simply selling. The AEW star states that it’s not always easy for the ringside doctor to stay aware of everything, and having people in the back watching on monitors could make a huge difference.
“As soon as the doctor sees a sign of somebody being concussed, he just hits the f—ing red button,” Moxley stated. “Boom, this is over. No matter how much time is left. No matter if it’s on live TV. It’s just over, and you figure it out from there.”
If Moxley’s system were to be implemented, it seems AEW would be the logical choice. Moxley has been with the promotion since debuting at the first show in 2019 and holds sway within the company. Only time will tell how the industry’s handling of concussions will evolve in the months and years ahead.
If you use any quotes from this article, please credit The Messenger and Haus of Wrestling for the transcription.