WWE wrestler Finn Balor has reportedly suffered a concussion.
This is upsetting news for Balor fans everywhere, and it comes just one week after Balor returned from an injury that had sidelined him for eight months and forced him to vacate the Universal Championship one day after winning it. There are still a lot of questions surrounding Balor’s apparent concussion, and it’s not yet clear how long he will be kept out of action, if he will at all.
Here’s everything we currently know about Finn Balor’s reported concussion.
1. Balor Was Elbowed in the Head by Jinder Mahal on ‘Monday Night Raw’ This Week
Finn Balor’s injury would have taken place on Monday Night Raw this past week, when Balor had a match with Jinder Mahal.
During the match, there was a moment that shocked a lot of the viewers at home and in the arena: Jinder Mahal struck Balor in the head with his elbow. Upon being hit, Balor immediately dropped to the ground.
For the rest of the match, mat burn could be seen on Balor’s face.
This moment in which Mahal knocks Balor down was played back in slow motion on Monday Night Raw.
2. PWInsider Reported on Tuesday That Balor Suffered a Concussion
For about 24 hours after Monday Night Raw aired, we heard nothing about Balor’s condition and about whether he suffered any serious injuries because of this Jinder Mahal match.
However, on Tuesday evening, PWInsider reported that Balor suffered a concussion.
“Numerous sources have confirmed to PWInsider that Finn Balor suffered a concussion last night against Jinder Mahal on Raw, his first singles bout back since returning to WWE TV,” PWInsider reported on their website.
3. The WWE Has Not Confirmed The Injury
At this time, the WWE has not confirmed whether Balor has actually been injured.
This doesn’t necessarily give us any indication of how true the report is. Sometimes the WWE announces a real-life injury right away, and sometimes they wait for a bit. For example, when Kofi Kingston was recently sidelined due to an injury, this was not announced until a full week after the injury supposedly took place.
If Balor has indeed been injured, we’ll likely get confirmation from the WWE within the next few days.
4. He Will Now Have to Undergo Concussion Tests
The next step here is that Finn Balor will need to undergo concussion tests backstage.
Specifically, Balor will be given something called an ImPACT test, which stands for Immediate Post-Concussion Assessment and Cognitive Test. According to the WWE’s official concussion policy, all WWE personnel are given a baseline ImPACT test. Then, within 24 to 48 hours of a head injury, they are given another ImPACT test, and the results are compared to their baseline.
If the results of this new ImPACT test are not comparable to the baseline test, the superstar will not be cleared to compete. They can retake the test in two to three days.
Even if they clear that ImPACT test, they won’t return to in-ring action right away. They then are put through a graded exertion test; this is meant to determine whether physical activity will trigger any concussion symptoms. It’s only after passing this exertion test that a wrestler may return to action.
5. He Could Be Out of Action For Anywhere From One Week to One Year
It’s difficult to tell how long Finn Balor could be out of action. Depending on the severity of the concussion, Balor could be back within a week, or he could be out an entire year. It entirely depends on the results of Balor’s ImPACT test.
Needless to say, though, the WWE takes concussions very seriously, especially considering in 2016, 53 former wrestlers filed a lawsuit against the company alleging a link between injuries sustained during their time with the WWE and the diagnosis of chronic traumatic encephalopathy, according to Rolling Stone.
In 2016, Daniel Bryan announced that he would be retiring from professional wrestling at the age of 34. He said at the time that he suffered at least 10 concussions throughout his career and that he experienced post-concussion seizures.
The most famous case involving concussions in the WWE was, of course, that of Chris Benoit, a professional wrestler who in 2007 murdered his wife and son and then killed himself. There has since been evidence to suggest that Benoit experienced brain damage from numerous concussions sustained during his wrestling career.