Santana And Ortiz Recall Cash Wheeler’s ‘Gnarly’ Injury, Look Forward To Facing FTR Again
Photo Credit: All Elite Wrestling
On the special “Fight For The Fallen” episode of AEW Dynamite, FTR faced Santana & Ortiz in a heated bout between two of the top teams in All Elite Wrestling. Unfortunately, Cash Wheeler suffered a serious laceration during the match, so the two teams had to call an audible and finish the contest sooner than they had initially planned to.
During a recent appearance on the AEW Unrestricted podcast, Santana and Ortiz reflected on the match and explained that they did the best they could in the middle of a highly concerning situation. Ortiz also described the sight of Wheeler’s injury in graphic detail by comparing it to a water fountain.
“I had no idea what was going on,” said Santana. “I just heard sometime yelling ‘F—‘ a million times, and I was like I guess something’s wrong.”
“It was a gnarly situation,” Ortiz added. “Because I was on the top rope with Dax [Harwood], and I look over and all I see is, it looked like a water foundation, you know, when you hold a water fountain, blood just came shooting out of Cash’s arm. And he just grabbed it and ran straight to the doctor. We were freaking out a little bit, but we were kind of like alright, what are we gonna do, what are we gonna do? And we got to it, and we did the best we could with the situation. And at that point, we just wanted to end the match, and obviously we didn’t know how badly injured he was.”
In hindsight, Santana noted that protecting your opponent is a foundational lesson for all wrestlers, but in this case, Wheeler’s injury was a freak accident. Looking forward, Ortiz then teased that he’s looking forward to the eventual rematch when the two teams will get a chance to “run it back.”
While Santana and Ortiz were dastardly heels earlier in their AEW run, they’re now a popular babyface team. With this shift, it’s somewhat even more fittin that the duo hopes to use their prominence in the company to act as role models for others. On the podcast, Santana and Ortiz explained that they want to show fans that anyone dealing with anxiety, depression or any number of battles can still enjoy success in a variety of ways. Santana also described how he has purposefully been open about his own struggles because he never wants anyone who faces similar issues to feel alone.
“I’ve always been one to always be open about things that I struggle with, as far as anxiety, and depression and things like that,” said Santana. “I remember as a kid always feeling alone with all that stuff, and I vowed, getting into this and having a platform, that I never want someone to feel like that. I never want someone to feel alone with any of their issues. We’re who we are, you see us on TV, but we’re regular people, just like you. And I think that’s the best thing, when you’re able to see someone on a certain stage and you can relate. I think we connect even more with people being that way.
“It gives people hope, that they can manage their anxiety and be like, ‘Oh, this person suffers from anxiety and depression, but has still been able to be successful in life,” said Ortiz.