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Four Injuries That Prove Pro Wrestling Is As Dangerous As The UFC



If you’re any sort of fan of combat sports, you’re most likely familiar with the gruesome injury suffered by UFC fighter Matt Mitrione, whose orbital bones were completely obliterated by a series of eye gouges in his recent TKO loss against Ronda Rousey's current main squeeze Travis Browne.
Now that’s a pretty sick injury, but nothing compared to some of the most gruesome incidents we’ve seen happen in a wrestling ring. Here’s a partial list of some of our favorites that prove that even as a “fake” sport, professional wrestling presents as many risks as any high-intensity contact sport out there.

Warning: You may never eat dinuguan or bulalo again after this. Consider this your fair warning.



Sid Vicious takes a break—literally


Remember that breathtaking high-flying acrobat Sid Vicious? No? Well, you’re not alone, because Sid was a man who relied on pure animal strength to steamroll his opponents with an array of chokeslams and power bombs on his way to multiple world championships in both the WWE and WCW. So WCW higher-ups probably should have thought better about demanding that Sid expand on his one-dimensional power-based attack by, say, coming off the top rope once or twice.

Sid was obviously not happy with this direction, but figured that perhaps one little flying kick against Scott Steiner during their pay-per-view battle at Sin wouldn’t be so bad. His leg didn’t agree, obviously, which led to this disgusting visual.


Anyone up for some bulalo? We didn’t think so.

Hayabusa invents the One-Man Vertebreaker


The masked Japanese icon Hayabusa is famous for innovating some of the gnarliest moves in the industry—just ask Seth Rollins, who used to crank out Hayabusa’s Phoenix splash once in a while, or Hardcore Holly, whose Falcon Arrow owes its existence to the Japanese legend as well. He’s never been one to shy away from extreme wrestling either as one of the true greats of the Frontier Martial-Arts Wrestling era, regularly putting his body on the line in wrestling rings lined with barbed wire and explosives.

It’s sad that one of his most basic moves, the springboard quebrada made famous by Chris Jericho as the Lionsault, ended up as his career’s undoing. In a throwaway match against Mammoth Sasaki, his foot slipped on the middle rope, landed plumb on his head even as the rest of his body was arching for a backflip, breaking two vertebrae and ending his career.


The man eventually walked again, but he will always be better known among casual wrestling fans for this cringe-inducing botch.

Joey Mercury Turns His Face Into Kaldereta


Joey Mercury is probably fresher in our minds as one half of J&J Security, who used to escort Seth Rollins to the ring during his reign as the Authority’s WWE World Heavyweight Champion. But if we flash back a few years, we may remember his role as Johnny Nitro-Morrison-Mundo’s partner in the much-reviled heel tag team, MNM. These dudes may have been the original red carpet squad of the WWE, but in one particular match against the daredevil Hardy Boyz, one mis-received ladder strike was all it took to turn Mercury from Hollywood hopeful to facial reconstruction candidate.

This footage doesn’t get any easier to watch over the years; poor Joey’s face just explodes into an extra-large helping of kaldereta, and he rolls out of the ring in clear distress. He broke his nose and orbital bone in this incident, and the lacerations reportedly required a combined thirty stitches to close.


We hope Mercury Drug was kind enough to provide some much-needed painkillers to the man who bears their company name. That's not the kind of injury you just walk off.

Vader’s Eye-Popping Moment


Despite being a gaijin, Big Van Vader was highly respected on the Japanese circuit for his mastodon-like power and his stiff, rugged, roughhousing working style. Too bad he happened to be in the ring one night with the notoriously near-sighted Stan Hansen, who pretty much had his own reputation for being one of the snugger in-ring workers, and has injured scores of wrestlers throughout the years, including the legendary Bruno Sammartino. Midway through a hard-hitting match, Vader caught an errant poke to the eye from Hansen which caused his eyeball to pop out of his head.

In true tough-buy fashion, Vader didn’t cry uncle, instead taking off his mask, and cranking his eye back into its socket all by himself. YouTube has taken down all footage of the incident, but we’ll leave you with this one nauseating visual.


Whew. Remind us never to wrestle in Japan.

*****

Got any more gruesome injuries to share? Leave us a note in the comments below, and remember, kids—don't try this at home. Leave the wrestling to the pros.

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