Johnny Gargano wrestled and submitted Ricochet last Saturday at Evolve 10, despite a two-week-old injury. He collapsed at the end of the match, and temporarily (only temporarily, I hope) is out of commission in wrestling. He describes the situation in detail in this letter to his fans, published on Facebook:
On January 1st I wrestled a show in WV... I sorta tweaked my back/pelvis in that match ... It hurt ... but I figured it'd be alright. It nagged at me for a bit, but I figured it was something I could work through. No big deal. On Saturday ... I don't know ... something just felt weird. My whole body was cramping up. I drank a ton of water, and thought I was just dehydrated. My lower back/abdomen started to swell. Every time I'd stretch or bend forward, a sharp twinge would go down both my legs. Needless to say ... I was scared out of my mind. I KNEW how big the match was, and what I needed to do. I just wasn't sure if my body would cooperate. I briefed Chuck Taylor on the situation and even had him bring out some water to the ring, just in case. It was probably the most nervous/dread I'd ever felt before a match. Not due to the situation ... but due to the uncertainty of my body. I don't remember much of the match, honestly. I remember that within the first 2 minutes, my legs stopped working. I couldn't feel them. Just walking became a chore. I couldn't raise my legs, or even bend down. The pain was indescribable ... but I knew I couldn't stop. We went 25 more minutes ... and I took A LOT of stupid bumps. Was that a dumb decision? Maybe ... but it's not in my DNA to just give up. The match had a lot of hype, and being put in that spot meant the world to me. My mind was willing, but my body just wasn't capable, sadly. As soon as the match ended, and the bit of adrenaline I had wore off ... All of my strength was gone. No more walking, no more moving ... just pain. They told me to stay in the ring and wait for medical attention, and I remember saying, "No! Get me out, there's one more segment. The shows not over, get me out so they can do it." They carried me to the back, and as soon as I went through the curtain, I collapsed. A lot of thoughts were running through my head. Was I paralyzed? Am I going to wrestle again? I honestly didn't know. I hate hospitals, and needles, but the pain was unbearable. The ambulance came and took me to the hospital (first time I'd ever been in an ambulance, by the way). They put an IV in me (another first) ... and filled me up with pain meds, etc. This is where I start to get groggy. Gabe stopped by, but I was already unconscious. They gave me a CAT scan which turned out okay. I randomly started throwing up. Needless to say, not one of my better nights. I had a flight to catch back home at 9 AM. We decided I should try bear through to make that flight. So I was released, and taken to the airport. A wheelchair met me out front, and wheeled me through security, and to my gate, and onto the plane. That flight ... SUCKED. I can't tell you how much pain I was actually in during that flight. They then met me with another wheelchair, and wheeled me out front where my Dad picked me up and took me home. Where I've been in my bed for 2 days ... and looks to be the case for a while longer. I'm going to make an appointment with a specialist to try to get this sorted out, and see what it is. I'm still in a ton of pain, and walking is still very difficult. I'd like to Thank EVERYONE for the kind texts, messages, and comments. I'm sorry I haven't replied yet, but I will. EVERYONE in the back that night that stayed by my side, checked on me, and did all they could to help me out. I'm truly blessed to have so many people care about me. I apologize to anyone that was let down by the match. I really wanted it to be special. Trust me ... no one is more disappointed then I am. I really tried to give you all I had.. unfortunately it wasn't much that night. You deserved better. I'm really sorry.If you are a fan, send the man your best wishes, if you have not already done so. The photos are by Scott Finkelstein.