Ricky Starks Explains That He’s Fully Cleared, Wants To Do Open Challenges For The FTW Title

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Ricky Starks Explains That He’s Fully Cleared, Wants To Do Open Challenges For The FTW Title

ricky starks

Photo Credit: All Elite Wrestling

Ricky Starks missed a few months on in-ring action earlier this year due to a severe neck injury he suffered on the April 21 episode of AEW Dynamite.

In an interview with Denise Salcedo of Instinct Culture, Starks offered some clarity about his injury by saying that he has been fully cleared to return to the ring. He also expressed his appreciation for the fact that AEW gave him time to fully recover and still kept him present in non-wrestling roles.

“No, the situation is that I’ve been cleared since July, I had a match in Austin, and that was my first match after the neck injury, and I’ve been cleared there after,” said Starks. “For whatever reason, people just put together ‘well he isn’t on TV because of that.’ That was never stated, that was never confirmed or anything like that. I do appreciate having the time off though, to further heal up my neck. When you have a broken neck, when you have a fractured neck, whatever type of bone that is broken, you have 3/4 months that it’s healed, but to fully heal it takes like 2 years.

“That’s just from a doctor’s point, a bone doesn’t fully heal until 2 years after. So I am always gonna have that, but to have the time off, and to have the time where I am still on TV and commentating and things like that, I am very appreciative of it, especially AEW giving me that time to slow it down and take my time with it. Anyone else could have rushed me back into the ring.”

Now that he’s back in action, Starks stated that he’d like to defend the FTW Championship in some open challenges. He pitched the idea that, in doing so, he could build up himself and the title the same way that Cody Rhodes’ open challenges elevated the TNT Championship.

“I like the challenge of having the FTW belt because I don’t fit the stereotypical mold of what that is as history has shown. We have Taz who is a very hard-nosed, badass basically, and I am a badass in my own right….I would like to have an open challenge for it. Regardless of whether people recognize it as a real thing or not, the fact of the matter is I am a champion regardless and at the end of the day I will remain a champion.

“So it would be cool for me to have somebody to come and challenge or I throw out the bait and see who catches it. But I think for me most important is that it’s Ricky’s title, it’s Ricky’s vision of what it is, and no one can say it differently. I can have the type of momentum that the TNT title had with the open challenges and things like that.”

Credit to Denise Salcedo for passing along the quotes in this article.

The full interview is available here:

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