Just when you thought maybe we were done with the debate about the six-woman match on the Sept. 24 episode of Raw... you know, the one where some errant YES kicks from Brie Bella left Liv Morgan with a concussion.
A lot of industry observers and fans blamed Brie, ring rust and a general lack of wrestling ability. The WWE and wrestling business at large circled their wagons, draped in banners reading “accidents happen” and “this ain’t ballet”, around the Total Divas star as she got a mix of reasoned criticism and the kind of disturbing bile that’s all too common online.
But Morgan was cleared to compete in another six-person tag in Australia last weekend and worked with Bella without incident at Super Show-Down. And we all lived happily ever after. Right?
Well... someone who unfortunately knows way too much about dealing with injuries discussed the incident with Lillian Garcia on the latest episode of her Chasing Glory podcast. Paige is a good person to ask about this. She’s not only adjusting to life after being told she can no longer perform in the ring due to neck/spine/nerve issues caused by her days in the squared circle, but the last bump she took was caught on film. Like the Bella/Morgan incident, the wrestler who was working with Paige at the time (Sasha Banks) was blamed by fans for her injury. Unlike the Sept. 24 Raw match, Paige’s house show tag was stopped immediately.
So, the current SmackDown General Manager should be able to provide a valuable perspective on what happened, right? Unfortunately, due to her desire to defend Brie and possibly not having seen the match, Paige ends up calling out Morgan’s friends and teammates Ruby Riott and Sarah Logan as deserving of blame:
“Accidents happen in the ring. I’m not gonna hold Sasha accountable for what happened to me. It is what it is. We’ve been all doing it for years and - at one point another one of us is gonna hurt each other. We can’t be perfect all the time.
Which is the same thing of what I get with Brie - I felt so bad for Brie. She’s never hurt anyone, this is the first time she’s hurt someone and she gets blamed for it? Come on, dude - it’s an accident. It’s an accident. Liv doesn’t blame her.
The thing that I don’t like about it is the fact that her teammates brought her back in the ring to do a suplex when everyone knew she was knocked out. That’s the thing that I don’t like. It’s just like - don’t come back in for the suplex. You know you’re hurt. We have concussion meetings all the time. Take care of yourself. But also, your tag partners - as much as I love them, they’re very sweet girls - they know she got knocked out, you don’t let her back in the ring again. That’s what Sasha did with me. As soon as she knew something was messed up, she was like, ‘I’m not continuing the match’. That’s a professional. She’s like, ‘I can’t do this.’ And I was trying to continue it and I was trying, I was trying, I was trying and she was like, ‘Stop. You’re gonna hurt yourself even more.’ And I get where Liv comes from, she wants to continue-continue, but stop. It’s not worth it. You end up like me.
So with Ruby and Sarah, take care of your teammate. You see that she got hurt. Don’t let her back in the ring again. And referee in there, don’t let her back in the ring again. But apparently the ref didn’t know anything. I’m like, ‘Come on! How do you not know?’ But Brie in that story, and they were trying, they were trying to take care of her, you know? I felt so bad for Brie. I felt bad for both of them, but the backlash that Brie got - if it was anyone else, there wouldn’t have been that much backlash - because she’s a Bella.”
As I’ve said before, I’m not a wrestler and I don’t know WWE’s protocol for these things. But no viewing of the match supports the idea Riott and Logan “brought” Liv “back in the ring to do a suplex”. If the match needed to be stopped immediately like Paige and Sasha’s 2017 house show one, Bella could have done that before dragging Morgan to the corner. A finish could have been improvised with Ruby before the triple suplex spot while Liv was on the outside. Nikki, who was paired with Liv in the latter spot, could have found a way to break off and get Morgan away from that bump.
I don’t know. But even if there’s a teachable moment here for Riott and Logan, I fail to see how throwing them under the bus on a popular, company-adjacent podcast is anything but a crappy move on Paige’s part.
And, I’m not fully fluent in subtweet, but I think Liv has some questions about it, too:
♀️— LIV Morgan (@YaOnlyLivvOnce) October 8, 2018
I’m so happy I haven’t done a podcast.— LIV Morgan (@YaOnlyLivvOnce) October 8, 2018
Check out Paige’s entire interview with Garcia on the latest Chasing Glory here.