Joaquin Wilde has been successful as part of Legado del Fantasma and the LWO, but he almost lost his opportunity to wrestle for WWE following a near fatal injury in 2017.
Wilde suffered an injury while performing a 450 splash onto Laredo Kid during a show in Mexico City back when he was working as DJZ. Wilde suffered a ruptured colon and internal bleeding during the match. The injury threatened to not only end his career just as it was reaching full bloom, but his life.
Miraculously, Wilde pulled through, and being the fighter that he is, the LWO member returned from the setback stronger than before.
On the “Out of Character with Ryan Satin” podcast, Wilde reflected on the injury and discussed his current WWE run.
You can check out some highlights from the podcast below:
On his mom’s reaction to his success: “She’s relieved. Yeah, especially after the whole stomach injury I had in Mexico. That was the point where my mom was like, ‘All right, you don’t have to keep doing this. You have a college degree, you don’t have to continue chasing this dream? Haven’t you done enough?’ But yeah I don’t know. Maybe I’m just stubborn and I had to see it through. Had to continue this journey, see if there really was a light at the end of the tunnel. And yeah, she’s very thankful that there was.”
On finding success after the injury: “It’s unbelievable. Yeah, I think sometimes, like — because it wasn’t just that this injury happened, it should have ended my career. It should have ended my life. I remember speaking to a gastroneurologist two months after this injury happened. And when he looked at my X-rays, I told him my story, whatnot. He looked at me and said, ‘I feel like I’m talking to a ghost right now. You should be dead.’ And I just thought to myself like, ‘Why was I given this second chance? Why was I spared, why am I still able to wrestle? Why am I still alive?’ And I just always thought, it’s because there must be something left for me to achieve in this business. And yeah, I guess WWE was that thing and here we are I’m so glad that it all worked out.”
On a recent episode of his 83 Weeks podcast, Eric Bischoff discussed his preference for a heel champion, wishing he could go back in time and book Goldberg’s WCW run again. Bischoff also explained why the timing for Bret Hart vs. Hulk Hogan was never right.
You can check out some highlights from the podcast below:
On if he prefers a heel champion and face chasing: “Yes. I think our entire culture roots consciously very consciously and sometimes subconsciously for the underdog. Everybody wants to see the little guy win. Everybody enjoys watching the underdog win. It’s part of who we are. So, yeah I like that and absolutely there’s a time and a place to have your babyface champion certainly Hulk Hogan proved that as did John Cena. It makes sense. Steve Austin makes sense for the right person for the right character in the right situation when you’ve got a locker room deep with credible well-established Q rating mongers that you can feed to that babyface, but absent a deep roster of viable, certifiably successful heels doesn’t last too long historically.”
On Goldberg not needing to win the WCW United States Championship: “Goldberg didn’t need it. If I had a do-over on this one, I would have established Goldberg much the way we did, but I would have made him more of an attraction and used less of him. Because I think the anticipation that came with Bill Goldberg, the mystique that came with Bill Goldberg, the intensity that came with Bill Goldberg was something that you could tape into at the right time in the right way, use it, and let it go away for a while. Let it heat up again. Let the audience want to see Bill Goldberg as opposed to what I did, which was feeling like, ‘Oh no, he’s successful we got to get him out there.’ Love a do-over on that. I would have stretched the whole second half of Billy Goldberg’s career in WCW. I would have played that over 18 or 24 month period as opposed to the kind of condensed trajectory that it had.
On if he believes that Bret vs. Hogan would have happened if Savage didn’t drop the title after Spring Stampede: “Sure, but the Bret/Hulk opportunity was something — there were two things going on or probably more than two, but two main things that were going on there is number one I really wanted to hold off on that. I wanted it to be a great build, and we weren’t ready for that yet at this point. Number one, we didn’t have the plan. We didn’t there was no looming great idea out there that was beyond us ‘oh we can shoot an angle, and we’re going to have a match.’ I mean, that’s easy it doesn’t take much talent, but we weren’t there yet. We knew that Bret/Hogan would be monster if it was done well. So, for better or worse, there was no urgency on Bret/Hogan number one because we didn’t want to waste it or not maximize it. Number two, there was a chemistry issue. There had to be trust there and Bret, with all do respect, and I do respect Bret for what he accomplished and what he was able to do in the ring in terms of performance and all that. But Bret was a unique personality, and so clearly is Hogan, and they had history. Chemistry wasn’t right yet. I didn’t feel it. A lot of this is feel. There’s no playbook. People think there’s a playbook because it looks like it makes sense on paper, but when you factor in all the variables, including personality and chemistry, sometimes what’s obvious isn’t quite possible at that time, and that’s where we were. Kind of in casual conversation, we’re going to love the idea. So did Bret they were both looking forward to it. But, when it came down to doing it not sure the timing was right yet. I was hoping it was going to be.”
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