Recently on The Art Of Wrestling, independent thinker, spirit, and wrestler Colt Cabana spoke with GFW's DJZ. Among other things, DJZ talked about his injury woes, including breaking his wrist in two places and his horrific accident in Mexico that required emergency surgery.
According to DJZ, his body has been beaten up since turning 30 years old. The two-time X-Division Champion says he broke his wrist in two places wrestling a free match in Chicago, Illinois.
"I was injured even before [the Mexico incident]. I had to get surgery on my wrist. I have a screw in there now. Yeah, like, I had never been injured in my whole [pro wrestling] career and now, over the last few months, it was like I turned 30 years old and everything just went downhill." DJZ reflected, "I got hurt the first time in September of 2016 and here we are now - it's July 2017 and I'm still injured, still catching up."
DJZ admitted the accident occurred when he was "being stupid as usual." Apparently, during the match, the competitors spilled out into the street and 'The Filipino Flex Factory' fell on his wrist.
"What I did not anticipate was that after I hit [the stop sign], I was going to have to fall down to the ground to the street below. And when I did that, I planted my wrist and all my weight came down on my wrist and I broke it in two places."
DJZ recalled, "I wrestled for another month with this wrist broken in two places, just taping it up with electrical tape and going hard for another month. And it was at Halloween, well over a month later, that I finally decided I should get an x-ray. And my doctor was like, 'dude, you broke your wrist in two places. The only way you may ever get full range of motion is to do a surgery and put a screw in it and even then there's no guarantee.'"
DJZ's cringier injury occurred in Mexico while the former Zema Ion was working for The Crash promotion. DJZ ruptured his colon and bled internally taking a 450º splash.
"I did a match in Mexico City at the beginning of April. Yeah, what sucked about this too was I came back from the wrist injury in January. I was just starting to get back to where I was before the wrist injury and then I get hurt in Mexico! But, yeah, basically, man, what happened was I took a 450º splash in this match in Mexico City. And when The Laredo Kid landed on my with this 450, you might as well have dropped a bag of cement from the top rope. That's how hard he landed on me. I thought I broke a rib, he knocked the wind out of me immediately. And I finished the match. I knew something was wrong. I didn't know to what extent. After the match is over, I go to the locker room and I'm trying to catch my breath because, like, the wind is still basically knocked out of me."
After laying in the locker room floor "for almost an hour" before anybody bothered to check on him, DJZ was brought to a nearby hospital and felt better after being given an IV. Although DJZ was released from the hospital, he "s--t pure blood" and fainted when he returned to his hotel.
"I ended up in the ambulance and that's where I recorded the now infamous video that I posted on Twitter, just letting the world know that I was going to the hospital because I was hurt and didn't know why. They take me to a hospital nearby and they stick me with an IV and pain medication and anti-nausea medication and I actually feel better when they do this. I'm like, 'I'm okay!' and they're like, 'oh yeah.' They never ran any tests. They were just like, 'yeah, you're fine! You can go.', so they release me and I go back to my hotel, which was like a 30-minute drive. As I start getting close to the hotel, I start feeling weird again."
DJZ added, "I walk into the hotel and there's a bathroom in the lobby of the hotel. I walk in there and as soon as I get in the lobby, throw my bags on the floor and go straight to that bathroom because I need to go. I went to use the bathroom and I go and I s--t pure blood and I know that's not normal. My body temperature is rising. I'm sweating profusely, but I'm just sitting on this toilet going, 'I know something is really, really wrong with me.' And I finally, like, try to walk out of the bathroom, and, as I'm walking out of the bathroom, I grab the handle to open the door and I just faint, just faint, drop on the bathroom floor."
Eventually, DJZ woke up and crawled out of the hotel lobby bathroom and he was brought back to the hospital.
"I don't know how much time passed, but eventually, I woke up on the bathroom floor, my head throbbing because I smacked my head when I fell. I have no idea how much time passed, but I knew I fainted. I'm like, 'oh, this is bad! This is so bad!' Yeah, I crawled out of the bathroom and the hotel staff finally got me and called an ambulance."
DJZ claimed that hospital staff demanded $500 before they would do anything. After running tests, it was determined that DJZ ruptured his colon needed surgery. The son of a mail order bride said there was a 20% chance he would need a colostomy bag for the rest of his life.
"I go into the hospital and these people are like, 'we're not touching you until you pay us $500 right now. Like, we're not running any tests.' 'Wow, okay,' so I gave them my credit card. This is how the debt I mentioned earlier started to form."
DJZ remembered, "they run a bunch of tests. They tell me, 'you're bleeding internally really bad. Like, this is serious. Your colon appears to be ruptured. That's what's causing you to bleed internally, so what we're going to have to do to save your life,' that's how serious it was, 'what we're going to have to do to save your life is cut open your abdomen, clean all of this internal bleeding, and then remove part of your colon, and resection your colon back together. 80% chance that we can do this and it'll be okay, 20% chance we can't do this and you're going to be rocking a s--t bag for the rest of your life.' Terrifying. Absolutely terrifying."
DJZ stated that the hospital staff demanded an additional $2,000 before they would perform the operation. Also, DJZ admitted that this was the most scared he had ever been in his life.
"Right before it's time for me to go for surgery, they hold me up for more money! They tell me, 'we're not starting the surgery until you pay us $2,000 cash right here on the spot.' And I'm in shock. I'm bleeding internally, worst pain I've ever felt in my life by the way." DJZ continued, "so I'm like, 'wow, guys, okay, well, here's my credit card again, sure.' So yeah, they run the surgery. When they put me under for that anesthesia, bro, I've never been more terrified in my life because I didn't know when I wake up from this surgery, I won't know if I'm going to be okay, if I'm going to have a s--t bag, if my [pro wrestling] career is going to be over. I might be dead. Who knows? In the end, they removed two litres of blood from the internal bleeding. That's yeah… I lost half the blood in my body."
While DJZ said he was told not to wrestle till well after the surgery, the former BroMan decided to work after only two months off. Additionally, DJZ professed that he ended up in a lot of credit card debt from the ordeal.
"I lost two litres of blood and they resectioned my colon. I was told, 'hey, it's going to be a long time before [you're] able to wrestle again.' But me, being the dummy that I am, looked at that as a challenge and said, 'sure, no, I'll be back in a wrestling ring in eight weeks. Just watch.' And it [has] been a really hard road ever since that injury. I think about it, not only did I lose about two litres of blood and part of my colon, I think of everything else that I lost! I lost tons of bookings; I lost opportunities that I had outside of [pro] wrestling, which were going to be some good paying gigs - I lost over $10,000 easily from what I would have been making from taking wrestling bookings and whatnot; I lost my mind a little bit, so all of these things, I lost and still had the goal in mind: eight weeks, I will get back in a ring, right or wrong."
DJZ explained, "I ended up in a lot of credit card debt just because of the surgery and having to use my credit card to have to pay the bills in Mexico. And they would not let me leave the hospital until I paid the full balance, so I got no choice. I had to use my credit card. I had to use my credit card, but this debt was like so high my mom was basically like, 'listen, you're never going to get out of this credit card debt with your lifestyle, but I'd rather you be in debt to me than the credit card company and the interest, so let me cover it and I'll pay myself back every time you get a paycheck, from Impact or whatever.'"
Following the exploded colon in Mexico, DJZ professed that he now suffers from panic attacks as he is always worried about the worst that can happen now. 'The Mountaineer' shared that something as simple as a hernia could be a huge problem for him.
"I was terrified, man! I've been having panic attacks," DJZ said, "from the trauma of the injury and how much of a crazy situation it was. I've never had a panic attack in my life and now I find that I'm getting them all the time. I still continue to, man. I feel like I'm dying because I'm so paranoid that, like, I'm ruining something internally because basically I was told if I get a hernia I'm screwed, so that's, like, in my mind right now because I'm not healed yet, I shouldn't be wrestling just yet as we know. But, like, the thing about it is when you make a living as a [pro] wrestler, if you ain't wrestling, you ain't making money, so I can sit here and let myself get broke, but hey, I've got credit card debt to pay. Well, actually, I have my mom to pay. I've got bills to pay, rent to pay, like, I know I've got to get back in there."
DJZ suggested that his doctor told him to wait till August to start wrestling again, but he started working well before then. Despite people telling him he is crazy for working so soon after the injury, DJZ argued that a "true professional" can work around injuries.
"He told me August I should be good. But, obviously, he didn't know I had already started wrestling. He told me, 'yeah, if you get a hernia, you're screwed, but you should wait until August.'" DJZ boasted, "everyone thought I was crazy for getting back into the ring so soon. And, yeah, I know I am, but I look at myself as a true professional to where, hey, this may be the situation, if I'm a true professional, I should be able to protect myself and work around the limitations and still have a good match."
Click here to check out the interview. If you use any of the quotes from this article, please credit The Art Of Wrestling with an H/T to WrestlingINC for the transcription.
Source: The Art Of Wrestling