Former WWE star Santino Marella has explained why he stepped away from the ring, effectively retiring from in-ring competition.
Marella initially announced his retirement from wrestling in 2014 while still with WWE.
The star returned to the ring after his WWE release in 2016, but only wrestled sporadically, never making a full-time return.
Speaking on The A2theK Wrestling Show, Marella noted that he initially had to hang up his boots due to a neck injury.
“It was my neck surgery. So I had my first cervical fusion. I had a double cervical fusion right off the bat.
“The goal was to come back and then a few months after, they noticed that one of the screws was coming out.
“Then at the end, at the three-month mark, one screw had completely come out, and one had come halfway out.
“So they had to go back in and take out the titanium. I think going back in the second time, kind of messed things up, cutting through the scarred tissue.
“I just never got well enough to a point where I can come back and wrestle on a full-time basis.
“I can have a match here and there, but to do it properly, on a full time.”
Discussing his WWE departure, Marella said:
“To be honest, I was kind of over it. I just wanted to come home a little bit. I opened up Battle Arts Academy in 2013. I actually retired in 2016.
“So, the last two years was me trying to get back in shape. Not physically, my neck and my back, to get back in shape to be able to come back and perform but it just never happened. It was all good.
“I had a very full life before WWE and I’ve had a very full life after WWE. It was a great chapter. Absolutely an incredible chapter.
“Up until the point that I retired, it was a quarter of my life, right? It’s funny, It’s not even my most recent chapter.
“Next year, 2023 – Battles Arts is having its 10-year anniversary. Then the last four years I have had this new family. That’s my most recent chapter. So wrestling’s kind of a few chapters back now.”
Marella’s daughter currently wrestles for WWE under the ring name ‘Arianna Grace’. The NXT star is currently out of action, recovering from an ACL injury.
You can read Grace’s latest update on her recovery right here.
Transcription via SEScoops.
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