Kyle O’Reilly was yet another shocking yet satisfying debut to come from WWE over the course of the end of 2021. He recently spoke with Aubrey Edwards and Tony Schiavone in an interview on AEW Unrestricted to speak about why for him, coming to AEW after a few successful years in NXT (WWE) was a no-brainer.
“Probably as soon as Bobby (Fish) debuted in AEW, and then of course, once Adam (Cole) debuted in AEW, the wheels started turning…It’s like, okay, well, what do I have to do to get there as well? You know, these are my guys. This is a place where I think Kyle O’Reilly can really be utilized well and fit in well, like this is a company that has really set the standard for an in-ring product, and I think I’m suited better in an environment like AEW, and it really felt like a homecoming there…
I’m just excited at all the prospects, all the potential matchups and just everything about AEW was like, man, what do we have to do to get there? So it’s kind of like, in motion, the second all those guys came over. Once my deal came up, it was kind of a no brainer.”via AEW Unrestricted /cultaholic.com (Transcription)
NXT 2.0 has come under fire since its debut episode, the 2.0 version being a rebrand from the long-beloved Black & Gold. If we look at just what O’Reilly was able to accomplish while operating under the Black & Gold version of NXT—a series of 3 epic matches with the aforementioned Adam Cole at the top of that list—and what he was relegated to doing after the revamp of NXT, perhaps we can understand his decision that much more.
It seems as though many of the Black & Gold superstars still remaining at NXT right now and some who have recently left, like Johnny Gargano, are having similar problems. For O’Reilly and probably some others who have had the foresight to see that there would be problems for them to continue doing what they were used to doing on the now newer platform of NXT, and deciding to leave at just the right time, is impressive indeed.
Looking forward to more epic matches from O’Reilly in AEW for sure, as should you, dear readers.
CM Punk on his ring gear and current shape
CM Punk’s gear has changed from event to event in recent history…from his very first match in AEW to just recently on Dynamite, in his brutal match against his longest running adversary since arriving in AEW, MJF.
The two certainly had quite the battle and it didn’t go the way that Punk would have liked, no, but it delivered in terms of athleticism and the type of epic story-telling that Punk was always used to delivering to the fans throughout his storied career.
He recently went into why he’s been changing up his ring gear so much as opposed to the classic trunks he always wore in the past. These comments come from an interview with Abe Kanan for Rock 95.5 in Chicago, he speaking specifically of his gear in his match with Eddie Kingston at Full Gear.
“I didn’t like the way they looked on me, they were a bad cut…I’m still struggling with how I look in gear and everything. That’s a process, trying to find the right material and the right cut for trunks and for long boys. It’s a process, man.”via Rock 95.5 in Chicago /Wrestling Inc. (Transcription)
On his physique, the legendary wrestler also had a few things to say:
“The last few years of my career, I was probably 210ish, 220 (when he was last in WWE—2014)…I got a lot of loose skin (now), like a newborn puppy. That’s what weight cutting does for you.”via Rock 95.5 in Chicago /Wrestling Inc. (Transcription)
He has downsized considerably. He was never a physique guy, in the past though, he opting to work out with rubber bands, other forms of functional strgth-based training, running and the martial arts as opposed to the classic bodybuilding theories that many other pro wrestlers subscribe to.
He of course had a run in MMA that sadly didn’t go as planned, but he’s kept in very good ring shape, despite the loose skin, as he calls it. In the end, it’s amazing to see him back, still, after all these months. The novelty hasn’t worn off, nor will it ever for many of his fans (this writer included). And in our eyes, he looks great and is having epic matches for sure.