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Pro Wrestling News: Katsuyori Shibata opens up about his return to NJPW

Being able to walk back to the locker room alone, means a great deal to 'The Wrestler'


Shibata won this year's New Japan Cup tournament
Shibata won this year's New Japan Cup tournament

What's the story?

Twitter user STRIGGA has translated Katsuyori Shibata's latest blog post, where the former 3-time NEVER Openweight Champion stated his feelings after making his grand return to NJPW.

Shibata made his shocking return to the promotion during the final day of this year's G1 Climax tournament. He took a bump after entering the ring and delivered a short promo, which translates to "I am alive. That's all".


In case you didn't know...

Katsuyori Shibata has been out of action since his match with Kazuchika Okada at Sakura Genesis 2017 in April. 'The Wrestler' collapsed backstage and was rushed to a hospital, where it was detected that he was suffering from a subdural hematoma.

The injury, which caused due to a stiff headbutt and dehydration, also resulted in some paralysis on his right side. There have been rumors that he will be never cleared to wrestle again.

The heart of the matter

In his translation of Shibata's blog "Real Talk", STRIGGA stated that 'The Wrestler' achieved a small goal in being able to return to the locker room 'on his own legs'.

Four months ago, at Sakura Genesis, Shibata was unable to walk back to the backstage area. He walked as long as he could and then started to crawl from where he was not visible to the audience anymore.

He stated that humans do several things that can't be explained by logic and being able to return backstage was very meaningful to the former NEVER Openweight Champion.

Knowing that he cannot change the past, Shibata felt that it would be a 'great driving force' to start from where he had left behind.

Shibata mentioned that injuries are part of this profession. His symptoms were said to be 'unrecoverable' but he has been gradually improving. Walking back to the locker room alone was a small goal to him and he believes that when someone starts achieving all the small goals, he definitely reaches a big goal.

Shibata thanked NJPW for accepting his proposal of making an appearance, just three days before the event. He also thanked the fans for the warm welcome and added that it gave him 'great energy'. It was that very moment which made him realize pro-wrestling is his life.

The blog post was concluded with the same words of his promo, "I am alive. That's all".

What's next?

Shibata's career threatening injury may prevent the NJPW officials from clearing him for in-ring action. There are rumors that the promotion will be using the former NEVER Openweight Champion as a full-time coach, moving forward.

Author's take

The blog indicates how much passionate 'The Wrestler' is, for pro-wrestling. Being a fan of Shibata, I hope that he fully recovers before returning to the promotion full time.

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