Jungle Kyona was surprised she got offer to wrestle for AEW, asked Tony Khan to book her again

The seven year veteran speaks about her AEW debut and further opens up about the injuries she's been dealing with

Photo Courtesy: @JJWilliamsWON on Twitter

Kyona deep dives into her injuries as well. 

On April 14th, Jungle Kyona is going to be in action at NOMADS’ Freelance Summit in Japan and it’ll be her last in-ring date before she undergoes surgery for a meniscus injury that she’s been dealing with. 

Throughout Kyona’s time in the U.S. in 2022, she was not 100 percent as her knee had been bothering her. During that time in the U.S., she made her debut for All Elite Wrestling against Riho at a Dark taping

Kotatsu Studios brought Kyona in for a sit-down interview and she shared that she was surprised she got the offer to wrestle for AEW. When she came to the backstage area, AEW President Tony Khan gave Kyona a fist bump and Kyona added that she did ask Khan to book her again. 

I was surprised when I got the offer (to wrestle for AEW). Riho’s a Japanese wrestler and she’s the inaugural AEW Women’s World Champion. There was a lot of attention for the match too because Riho hadn’t been on AEW for a while so I was able to be in a match that had a lot of people watching. I’ve had title matches against her in Japan and had also teamed with her too. So I was very happy to be able to fight her, at AEW of all places. Tony Khan gave me a fist bump after the match and told me I did a good job. I was very happy about that. I asked him to book me on AEW again.

The meniscus injury that Kyona has dealt with over the past several years has been well documented. She expressed that she had been working on a bad knee for quite some time but was able to power through because of the muscle she built around the injured area. Once Kyona suffered her shoulder injury, she said her entire body was thrown off balance. 

I went four-to-five years without missing a show from the day of my debut. It looked like I was immune to injuries, though I did have small ones here and there. To be honest, I injured my knee at quite an early stage, but it was manageable. I was a power fighter and not a high flier, and I had no problems lifting opponents. I was able to fight without having fans notice that I had a bad knee because I was able to build muscle around my knee to help support it but after my shoulder injury, my entire body started to get thrown off balance and the damage to my knee started to accumulate and get worse so I went into hiatus to get surgery on my knee.

She went on to speak about the upcoming surgery in April and shared that the damaged section of her meniscus is going to be removed which is a last resort for meniscus injuries. 

At her current condition, she cannot get the muscles around her knee above a certain percentage and does not know what the root of the injury is. Kyona added that there is no expectation for a recovery. 

The next surgery will be on my meniscus again but this time, it won’t be a suture. That failed twice, so this time we’re going to remove the damaged section. That is the last resort when it comes to treating a meniscus injury. Separately, right now, I’m unable to train the muscles around my knee. My muscle strength right now is at about 20 percent of what it used to be pre-injury and in my current condition, I can’t train to get it back above 20 percent. The problem is we don’t know the root cause which we’ve been trying to find out for over a year. I’ve seeked second and third opinions from orthopedic surgeons, I’ve seen over 10 physical therapists, tried acupuncture and chiropractors, trying to identify the root cause, but we still don’t know what’s causing it. Right now, there’s no expectation for a recovery. So that is actually the reason why doctors aren’t clearing me to wrestle.

Continuing on that, prior to the NOMADS’ press conference, she had been thinking about the idea of announcing her retirement from in-ring competition. She has not been able to figure out what’s wrong, but she wants to continue fighting in hopes of coming back to the ring. 

To be honest, given that my body is a mess right now and I hadn’t been able to wrestle for two years then making a comeback but not being able to go at 100 percent, it’s been very heartbreaking. I was happy to stand in the ring again and it was fun to wrestle but it was frustrating because I knew I could do more if not for the knee but I don’t even know what the actual problem is and it’s eating away at me mentally. I can’t help but think of retiring. Until the very last minute before the NOMADS’ press conference, I couldn’t dismiss the idea of announcing my retirement but I love wrestling, and I want to stand in the ring again. I want my fans to see me at my 100 percent, or even stronger at 120 percent. I also want people to gain courage from seeing my fight through my recovery. It’s not time to give up yet. So although I’ll be going into indefinite hiatus, I don’t want a 10-bell salute just yet. I want everyone to keep believing that I’m coming back to the ring because that will motivate me to find and fix the problem in my knee.

Kyona was in action in January at The Great Muta’s Final Bye-Bye event. She is also scheduled for a ZERO1 show in March. 

If the quotes in this article are used, please credit Kotatsu Studios with an H/T to POST Wrestling for the transcriptions. 

About Andrew Thompson 8789 Articles
A Washington D.C. native and graduate of Norfolk State University, Andrew Thompson has been covering wrestling since 2017.