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Report: Former Intercontinental Champion Working To Return To WWE Ring

It would be a Milan Miracle if he came back...

Throughout his early career, Daniel Bryan suffered at least 10 concussions, which caused a lesion in the brain and forced him into retirement into 2014. While Bryan was ultimately cleared by WWE's medical team in 2018 and has been wrestling in the company ever since, The American Dragon found it difficult to get cleared by WWE despite independent doctors declaring it safe for him to perform. This led to Bryan requesting his release from the company so he could wrestle in Ring Of Honor or New Japan Pro Wrestling, but WWE consistently denied his requests.

Now, a similar situation is seemingly affecting former Intercontinental Champion Santino Marella. The Milan Miracle was forced to retire in WWE in 2014 after undergoing neck surgery for the third time. However, after his release from the company in 2016, Marella came out of retirement and has been sporadically wrestling ever since. He most recently wrestled in the Women's Royal Rumble match as his twin sister Santina but wasn't cleared to take any bumps and eliminated himself from the match, despite wrestling a 10-minute match back in September against Simon Grimm at Josh Barnett's Bloodsport 2.

Marella is determined to end his career on his terms in WWE, however, and Dave Meltzer has reported in the Wrestling Observer Newsletter that the former Miss WrestleMania is travelling to Colombia to undergo stem cell treatment to repair his neck. Meltzer explained other wrestlers like RVD, Kevin Nash, Edge, and Sheamus have all undergone the same treatment and have credited it with helping them prolong their careers.

For the avoidance of doubt, Meltzer wrote: "A huge thing that may even revolutionize careers is the stem cell treatment that a lot of wrestlers have used flying to Colombia. The idea is that it regrows tissue and discs and regenerates injuries. A lot of talent, Kevin Nash, Rey Mysterio, Rob Van Dam, Brian Cage, Edge, Sheamus and many others have gone there for treatment. Anthony Carelli (Santino Marella) is there this week and he noted on Sunday Night’s Main Event in Canada that every wrestler who has gotten that treatment except Kurt Angle, whose damage must have been so bad that it simply was beyond repair, has ended up with good results from it. While Edge never talked about it, that is said by others to be part of what has allowed him to return. Carelli, who has had back and neck issues that ended his career, is looking to return to wrestle and end his career on his own terms, as well as go back to competing in age group judo."

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Aidan Gibbons

Written by Aidan Gibbons

Cultaholic's resident newshound.