WWE News: Finn Balor opens up on what he learned during his injury, finding his place in WWE
What's the story?
In an interview with In This Corner podcast, Finn Balor opened up about his time away from WWE due to injury and his sense of belongingness in WWE, among other things.
In case you didn't know...
Finn Balor had an extremely successful near 2-year run at NXT, where he was a record-breaking NXT champion, holding the title for 292(still the longest in its history).
He arrived on RAW after being drafted in the 2016 draft as the 5th overall pick, a huge feat for someone who didn't have a match on the main roster yet. What was surprising was that he was picked ahead of superstars such as Roman Reigns, John Cena, Randy Orton and more.
He took the main roster by storm, defeating Roman Reigns clean on his first night on RAW and then defeating Seth Rollins a few weeks later at SummerSlam to become the first-ever Universal Champion.
However, his luck took a turn for the worse as he dislocated his shoulder during his SummerSlam match and was forced to vacate the Universal Championship 24 hours later. He would then be out of action until the RAW after WrestleMania.
The heart of the matter
Regarding his half-year plus time away from WWE due to injury, The Demon King revealed that it helped him gain some new perspective (H/T: WrestlingInc):
I think that time off was the first standard break that I had in pro wrestling in a very long time, and not only did it help me take stock to where I was at and what I was doing, but also to reflect on the journey that I had," he said. "I always felt like I didn't belong; for the longest time I felt like somebody is going to catch me as I snuck in through the back door; whether it'd be New Japan or NXT, but having that time off and reflecting on the journey that I was on, and then I realized that I do belong in WWE and do belong to be on the top. It gave me that confidence and self-belief that I can perform in any situation.
Balor also said that his initial main roster run gave him the confidence about being a top guy in WWE
We all struggle with our own limitations. We can say we believe in ourselves and we can say that we think we can do it, and I do believe in myself and believed that I can always do it, but there is always that thing that is lingering there. For the longest time I kind of struggled with keeping that in check; having gone through what I went through at SummerSlam and taking me to the next level, it gave me the confidence in myself and that has been the key factor in what has changed since I debuted on Raw. Now, I really believe in myself.
In an interview with Good Ol' JR Jim Ross after his injury, he gave an affirmation that he was aware how highly he was viewed backstage despite his injury. It definitely would have been an affirmation given how hard he was pushed in just a month.
Finn Balor will likely be on the RAW Survivor Series team. If the Wrestling Observer Newsletter is spot on, then Balor will captain RAW's team, while AJ Styles will captain SmackDown Live's team.
Given how fast-paced the schedule in WWE is, it's sometimes good to step back and analyse for superstars to be able to introspect and analyse their careers. For Finn Balor, it was one train ride to another, from NJPW to NXT to RAW. He got to go back home to Ireland and his return journey is captured beautifully in the WWE 24 episode dedicated to him. If you haven't seen it, do yourself a favour and go watch it now!
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