WWE NXT's Kushida Reveals He Considered Retiring In 2017
Kushida's NXT run almost never happened
Kushida's run with WWE NXT almost didn't happen.
The Time Splitter signed with WWE in early 2019 and while it took him a little while to get a push, he has cemented himself on the black and gold brand in recent months and is the reigning NXT Cruiserweight Champion.
Kushida went one on one with Kyle O'Reilly in the main event of NXT earlier this week and when reflecting on the match on social media, the former NJPW star revealed he considered retiring in 2017 due to severe abdominal pain.
In 2017, around this time, I was considering retirement after every match. I was concerned about my mental and physical health after every match. I wrestled back and forth between Japan and the United States twice a month.
During that time, I sometimes suffered from severe abdominal pain after matches. I crouched on the floor with a cold sweat and had no choice but to wait for the pain to pass. I had to insert a gastro camera down my throat at the hospital to examine my stomach. But the doctors couldn't find anything wrong. The doctor's diagnosis was that my autonomic nerves must have been disturbed. My level of this abdominal pain wasn't normal. And, if it continued, I couldn't wrestle anymore. I knew it wasn't an exaggeration. And I knew that my wrestling career could be over at any time.
I had a match with Kyle O'Reilly at that time. It was four years ago in London. At that point, it was rumored that Kyle O'Reilly would soon sign a contract with WWE. After our match, I talked to him directly. He told me his honest intentions. At that time, I thought it would be great to have a match against him in the WWE some day. I knew my professional wrestling life wouldn't last forever.
So Yesterday was special. WWE/NXT universe! Thank you for watching. Our fight will go on forever.
Kushida and Kyle O'Reilly faced off in the first round of the British J-Cup at a RevPro show in July 2017, only four days before Kool Kyle debuted at a WWE NXT taping. Kushida won the match and made it to the four-way final where he, Will Ospreay and Marty Scurll were defeated by Jushin "Thunder" Liger.