Pro wrestling heels can really do a whole lot better than this.
New Japan’s El Phantasmo defeated Will Ospreay in the Super J-Cup over the weekend. After the upset win, Phantasmo got on the mic and cut a heel promo. Looking to get some heat, Phantasmo referred to Ospreay as “The Autistic Assassin”.
A very dumb and very bad promo from Phantasmo. The event won’t air on NJPW World until some time next month, but those in attendance heard Phantasmo put his foot directly in his mouth.
Today (Aug. 29) Phantasmo took to Twitter to issue an apology to anyone he may or may not have offended.
August 29, 2019
“I’d like to address my actions after winning the Super J Cup this past (weekend)….
In the heat of the moment I called Will Ospreay “The Autistic Assassin” and I want to say sorry to anyone that was offended by my comment. It was uncalled for on my behalf and you deserve better. Looking back I wish I didn’t say it, I promise it wasn’t scripted, it was an unnecessary way of getting cheap [heat] and I genuinely apologize if you were hurt by my words. I’ve never been comfortable on the mic, the inexperience showed and I promise to do better going forward.”
Here’s the thing, apologize and own up to your actions, don’t apologize for offending people.
Phantasmo’s apology/non-apology will surely spark up the never ending pro wrestling debate on what heels can and cannot say. Oftentimes this isn’t even about generational differences, El Phantasmo’s promo was just born out laziness.
Do pro wrestling fans really want to go back to a time when heels saying prejudiced, racist, or sexist remarks were commonplace?
As luck would have it, the team of Taiji Ishimori and El Phantasmo will take on the team of Robbie Eagles and Will Ospreay this weekend at New Japan’s show in London, England.