El Desperado chats eye surgery he had in November, thought about missing NJPW WK 18 prior to Hiromu Takahashi’s challenge

Photo Courtesy: New Japan Pro-Wrestling

Desperado provides an update on his vision. 

At NJPW Power Struggle in early November, IWGP Junior Heavyweight Champion Hiromu Takahashi called out El Desperado and offered him a title match at Wrestle Kingdom 18. Desperado accepted, but added that he would be undergoing eye surgery ahead of their match. 

Desperado returned to in-ring action as a part of the Road to Tokyo Dome shows. NJPW1972.com caught up with him and asked about his vision. He stated that it is ‘still off’. 

(My vision is) still off. If I look up with my eyes, then my right and left eyes move different distances, so I get double vision. Straight ahead, I’m OK though.

He said the timing was not good when Takahashi threw out the challenge. He already had his surgery date set and was thinking of taking more time off if all he had on the docket for Wrestle Kingdom was the New Japan Ranbo. He saw that as a chance to continue recovering. 

Desperado feels it would’ve looked bad if he turned the title match down, but says it’s his fault for not thoroughly communicating with NJPW. They knew about his surgery, but did not know how much time he was thinking about taking off. 

Honestly, I did think the timing sucked (Hiromu calling him out for Wrestle Kingdom). My surgery date was set, so I was thinking of taking the time off if all I had at Wrestle Kingdom was the Ranbo. With all the people in that thing, you never know what could happen, especially with bad eyesight, so I was thinking that would be my chance to take more time off.

Well it would look pretty bad if I turned it down right before the main event. It would have made Hiromu look bad too and in all honesty, it was my bad for not communicating with the company well enough. I told them about the surgery but not how much time I was thinking of taking off.

Elsewhere in the conversation, Desperado addressed the younger crop of junior heavyweights in New Japan. He said the company is screwed if they do not step up. He added that they need to be more egotistical and selfish when it comes to their careers. 

But one thing I want (Master) Wato and SHO and YOH and all those guys to know is that that big three of Desperado, (Taiji) Ishimori and Hiromu (Takahashi), it isn’t our fault that exists. It’s on those guys to step up.

Not to put too fine a point on it, we’re screwed for the future if those guys don’t step up big. If I had to say anything to those guys, it’s that I want them to be more egotistical. More selfish. They have to come at me, at Hiromu, at Ishimori. In the end, the two best juniors are going to be fighting January 4th, and if you think you’re better, then step up.

There will be audio and written coverage of Wrestle Kingdom 18 here on POST Wrestling. 

About Andrew Thompson 8246 Articles
A Washington D.C. native and graduate of Norfolk State University, Andrew Thompson has been covering wrestling since 2017.