Saraya confirmed on this week's AEW Dynamite that she's officially cleared to return to in-ring competition for the first time since suffering a career-ending neck injury in 2017 and being forced to enter retirement in 2018. The former WWE Divas Champion then appeared on Renee Paquette's The Sessions on Thursday and went into detail about how she got cleared. She'll compete in her first match at the AEW Full Gear pay-per-view on Nov. 19, taking on Dr. Britt Baker.
"I came to terms with not being able to wrestle anymore and that's fine, although a couple of years ago, I did some X-rays, and they were looking great, but I didn't do the full MRI, but I did the X-rays ago. It's not like the perfect read on your neck and stuff like that, you know, with all the fluid thing," Saraya said (h/t WrestlingNews.co).
"So I was a little nervous about doing the MRI a couple of years ago," she later added. "So I was just like, okay, they're looking good. Maybe in a couple years, I'll talk like, you know, it starts getting better, but I'm like, I'm not gonna rush it because Edge was out for like nine years. Stone Cold had that match with Kevin Owens, but he didn't bump very much, you know, like, it was like, very limited, but they still had like an amazing match. That was inspiring to me. I was like, man, like, I probably could pull off doing a Stone Cold match and that was just like in my head because the match. You wouldn't think that there were a crazy amount of bumps because the story that they told was so fantastic."
Saraya then went into detail about how she finally got cleared on Halloween, a little over a month after her AEW debut — "So I remember throwing the idea at Tony, and then he was just like, 'You know, like, when Sting came in, we did tag matches.' So he was like, 'Well, maybe we can do some tag matches' I was like, if I was to come back, I would want it to be a singles match.' So I remember talking to the doctors, and they were like 'Okay, you can do this, but we're not going to clear you to take a bump.' That's the whole misconception with how the internet works is, 'Oh, she talked to like 25 doctors and AEW doctor, Dr. Samson cleared it.' He didn't clear me for anything. First of all, I went out there with Britt and we did our own thing. Like, I didn't ask clearance from the doctor there. I'm going to be honest. He was cool with it. He was like, 'Just please don't take a bump.' He was like, if you want to actually have matches, like we have to get you completely cleared. That means MRI, CT scans, everything.' I was like, 'Okay, well, I don't want to go to a doctor which is associated with wrestling because I feel like there's a little bit of bias there. I'm just like, I don't want to make the same mistake where I came back and then I was like, wrestling every single day and just like doing all these crazy things. I'm like, no, I really want to be aware and careful of my neck this time around. Like, I really want to get to like the nitty gritty of what my neck looks like and how much I can do and if I'm even gonna be paralyzed, because that was the biggest scare is that if I did wrestle, I could potentially get paralyzed."
Printed and framed this. pic.twitter.com/xFfsv6WVuN— SARAYA (@Saraya) November 10, 2022