Early this week sources indicated that Sami Zayn will in fact have to have surgery on his shoulder.
The injury will hopefully repair a torn rotator cuff. As you will recall, the origin of the injury stems from his first encounter with Kevin Owens on NXT Take Over: R-Evolution and aggravated again at the NXT Championship match up at NXT Take Over: Rival.
Zayn took a month away from action after the fact. The rematch was then signed for NXT Take Over: Unstoppable on May 20th.
At Raw three weeks ago, Sami Zayn would debut as a challenger for John Cena’s U.S. Title Open Challenge. During Zayn’s entrance as he approached the ring stairs, he threw his arms in the air as Sami would normally do to pump up the crowd, he jerked too hard and the injury happened.
Zayn is expected to be out of action for three-to-six months. At Unstoppable, the NXT Championship match was thrown out after Owens power bombed Zayn on the ring apron and proceeded to assault him. It is speculated that the ending to their match was a way to write Zayn off the show for his surgery.
It should be noted that this same injury has NXT competitor Hideo Itami out for nearly eight months as well. Itami, who suffered his torn rotator cuff during a show, was written off the show during Unstoppable making the Number 1 Contenders match a one-on-one between Finn Bálor and Tyler Breeze. Fans watched a video showing Enzo Amore and Colin Cassidy arriving followed by Itami being shown laid out being attended to.
During the NXT Women’s Championship match between Sasha Banks and Becky Lynch, it should also be noted that the two are NOT injured, but the match itself nearly saw the two almost give each other the exact same injury with the caliber of submission moves utilized.
With this happening for nearly the last two months to major players in NXT, questions need to be asked. First off, NXT is developmental.
As a wrestler in NXT, you will tend to wrestle harder, do crazier moves, and do whatever it takes to get that final call up to perform on the main roster. Fans have witnessed what the main roster has received from recent call-ups: the inaugural NXT Champion, now WWE World Heavyweight Champion Seth Rollins, Dean Ambrose, and Roman Reigns, Rusev, Bray Wyatt, Bo Dallas, Adam Rose, Xavier Woods, and Neville, just to name a few.
Granted, there is a phenomenal surplus of amazing talent, but to the question, is risking injury BEFORE getting to the main roster worth it?
Many would say yes. The dream of wrestling on the main roster for THE company that many only dream of competing for nearly outweighs better judgment.
Guys like Sami Zayn spent upwards of nearly 15 years competing for many independent groups like ROH and other internationally known companies, suffering shoulder issues or worse since. Some let it go without ever noting it with WWE’s physicians until its too late and spend sometimes months out of action.
Once at NXT, the thought of putting on a Wrestlemania caliber matches, much like Kevin Owens versus Sami Zayn at Rival, come with a price. Then there is the recovery and rehab process.
While many heal properly and get back to virtually 100%, especially with rotator cuffs, there are some (like Sami Zayn) who don’t take the necessary time to recover and do further harm in the end, risking longevity.