– Alex Riley recently did a Q&A with the WWE website to discuss his return to WWE NXT, the new attitude and more. The full interview can be read at this link. Below are highlights:
WWE.COM: To those unaware of the injury you suffered, what exactly happened?
RILEY: Well, shortly after my matches with Kevin Owens, I found out I had a second meniscus tear in my right knee. Prior to that, I have no idea. I had hurt my knee in a match in Washington, D.C., almost a year before I had it looked at. At that point, I thought it was like most of the injuries I had dealt with in my life. I figured I’d ice it, give it some time, and 99 times out of 100, the injury just gets better.
I was also coming to the end of my contract with WWE and very badly wanted an opportunity to get back in the ring full-time, and for some reason I got the feeling I was going to be given another look, so I ignored the injury. Kevin Owens threw me over the desk three months later, and I had finally gotten a chance to go be myself again. I can tell you in those weeks that I was in and out of the ring with Kevin Owens, the knee had never felt better. I attribute that to the high I was on from just being back out there. When that was over, I had an opportunity to get it looked at and it ended up being a small meniscus tear. It was a very simple surgery, and off we go.
WWE.COM: Why do you think this attitude of survival is pivotal for you?
RILEY: I always have been at my best when my back is against the wall. Sometimes I feel like I am not 100-percent focused until that point. I literally wake up every day to a dogfight in one of the most competitive companies in the world, and I am at the bottom of the mountain. I feel blessed to have had it almost come crashing down a couple times and one time completely. I know what it’s like to not eat, to be pushed to the back of the line, ignored, blackballed and disregarded. There are not many things I know for sure about the course of my life, but I promise that will never happen again.
WWE.COM: You’ve been on record saying that you “make no apologies from this point forward.” What does that mean?
RILEY: The “no apologies” thing came from the fact that I have always been considered a nice guy and prided myself on that. I have always apologized when I thought I wasn’t being such. There is no room for that in my world as it stands now. I always say that for eight years, I was both Kevin Kiley and Alex Riley while I was in WWE. It became very obvious to me along the way that they couldn’t coexist in this world. Either Alex Riley would survive and take his rightful place in the company, or Kevin Kiley would be back in a suit and tie, selling medical devices.
Right or wrong, for better or worse, Kevin Kiley is now dead and gone. The man that stands here today will never apologize for what circumstances and a basic need to survive have made him. This is not a game of laser tag or dodgeball. The world I live in is a game of life and death, and I won’t apologize for treating it that way. If you were left out in the cold for as long as I had been, and had to take someone’s comforter, food, or even their home to survive, you wouldn’t apologize either.
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