In an interview with talkSPORT, James gave us more of a behind-the-scenes explanation for what happened. The veteran shouted out the company’s concussion safety protocol and indicating it wasn’t the referee’s sole decision to call for the bell. Mickie again indicated there will be fallout from the finish on television, too:
“I honestly don’t know. I rolled back to count – one, two – there was no count. So she obviously went to go and lock back in the Asuka lock and I think in those moments, here’s the thing: it is a dangerous sport.
We have to be very careful. The refs do their job and kind of their job is to protect us and make sure it never goes too far or no one ever gets hurt. So he made his decision based on what he thought was a reality, that I was hurt or I couldn’t continue and that’s unfortunate for me.
I felt like I could continue and it’s an unfortunate loss. But, it’s not a real loss let’s face it. It was the final decision, what can I do? Except go in there a throw a fit on Monday!
In that moment it’s very hard for them to tell whether you are hurt or not. It can’t just be his call either. It must have been whoever thought I was hurt. They’re just trying to protect me and keep me safe because concussions are a real thing. What we do as a sport is very dangerous. So if somebody gets a concussion, not only can they not wrestle the rest of that match, but they could possibly never wrestle again depending on how bad it is, same with football.
So we have to be careful with that and I get it. It was unfortunate for me and stinky, but I’m fine. My nose hurts a little bit from that knee lift, I’ll be honest [laughs].“
Will that serve to close the book on a weird moment, at least from a shoot perspective?