Kyle O’Reilly Reveals He Couldn’t Use His Arm For Months After Neck Surgery

kyle o'reilly aew revolution
Photo Credit: AEW

It was a long journey for Kyle O’Reilly to return to the ring for All Elite Wrestling.

Kyle O’Reilly made his surprise return to All Elite Wrestling earlier this month at AEW Revolution. The former Undisputed Elite member will compete in his first match in almost two years against Bryan Keith this Saturday night on Collision.

Before his in-ring return, O’Reilly gave a revealing look into the last two years of his life in an All Elite Wrestling social media exclusive, revealing that a rare complication of his neck surgery resulted in him losing the ability to use his right arm for several months.

“I had neck surgery, I was expecting that,” Kyle O’Reilly said. “But I wasn’t expecting to have a seriously rare complication where I would wake up in the hospital bed and no longer have the use of my right arm. No, I didn’t really bank on that one.

“But man, I’ve been thrown so many curveballs in life. I feel like every single moment that you spend in this business is just one more unexpected curveball thrown your way. And we learn how to deal with those and we learn how to hit a home run every single time we step up to bat. And then what happens when you don’t really get a chance to step up to bat? So that’s where my mind has been these last few years.

“I really didn’t know if I was ever going to wrestle again. For a long while, I was pretty damn sure that in June of 2022, my match with Jon Moxley was the last match of my career. And I was okay with that. I really was. If I can just get my arm back and I can brush my teeth again. I can wipe my ass like a normal human again. And I can take care of my daughter and be a father. That’s really all that I was focused on. That’s all that mattered.

Kyle O’Reilly is thankful for the support from the boys and the fans

“It took a long time to get any of that back. I mean, I couldn’t move my arm for damn near ten months. But I just had a lot of support, man. So many of the boys reached out. So many fans wishing me well and hoping to see me wrestling again. The fact that one person, anyone in the world, wanted to see Kyle O’Reilly in the ring again. One person that gave a damn about me. That was enough motivation that I would ever need in this lifetime or the next.

“I’m a kid that had type one diabetes that’s from Canada that was told he could never pursue a career in wrestling, and somehow I was able to. So I have that with me, that shred of confidence. But I know I’m a good wrestler. I know I’m a damn good wrestler; I know I’m fast, I’m technically proficient. I know deep down I can still go in my mind if the body can hold up, that remains to be seen. We’ll have to see what happens when that first crack of the mat and my body hits, and all the air shoots out your lungs and how I’ll be able to recover.”

His in-ring return against Bryan Keith on AEW Collision

From there, O’Reilly focused on his AEW Collision opponent, Bryan Keith. O’Reilly admitted he’s impressed by Keith and believes he’ll be a good opponent to see if he still has that beast inside of him or not.

“But yeah, I’m very excited to wrestle Bryan Keith. I’m very impressed by him,” Kyle O’Reilly admitted. “I think he’s a fantastic wrestler. And he’s a good opponent to really try and see if I do still have that beast in me because I know he’s not going to pull any punches. He’s not going to take it easy on me; he’s going to test me because he’s hungry. He’s hungry like I was; he’s trying to prove that he belongs here too. So who am I to say that he doesn’t?

“And that’s exactly why he’s the perfect opponent for me. I mean, what better way to test your mettle against one of the best? Out of the out of the frying pan and into the fire, as they say. I appreciate you all so much from the bottom of my heart and the fact that I just get to be here and throw on some tights and go out there in front of a crowd again. Even if I never win another match as long as I live. That is a victory.”

READ MORE: Kyle O’Reilly Reflects On Return At AEW Revolution, Felt The Love In His Loins

What do you make of Kyle O’Reilly’s comments? Are you surprised to learn just how bad his injury was? Let us know your thoughts by sounding off in the comments section below.

If you use any of these quotes, please credit AEW with a link to this article for the transcription.

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