The latest episode of WWE NXT featured quite a scary moment, as superstar Mercedes Martinez was reportedly sent to the hospital after a brutal kick to the head that may have connected hard enough to make Martinez lose consciousness. Fans are understandably concerned for Martinez's well-being after her latest match with Jake Atlas against Xia Li and Boa.
Though Mercedes Martinez started off impressively enough, the match came to an abrupt end after Xia Li caught Martinez with a stiff roundhouse kick to the head. Upon being struck, Martinez stiffly fell face-first onto the mat, where she was pinned by Li, though with one arm raised up. She definitely appeared to be out of it, and was seemingly talking to Li as she was being pinned. Both Li or the referee could then audibly be heard asking Martinez if she was ok. A short time after waving Li aside, the referee called for an end to the match. You can check out the whole exchange below, with Martinez's injury coming soon after the 2-minute mark.
After the match ended, Sean Ross Sapp of Fightful.com reported that Mercedes Martinez was evaluated by NXT staff backstage, but it appears as if something was off, as she was then taken to the hospital for further evaluation. Martinez appeared alert enough to pull herself toward the ring's ropes as the match concluded, but the footage can't really confirm or deny anything about her medical status.
It's worth noting that while Mercedes Martinez was active on social media ahead of the telecast, she has not posted yet on either Twitter or Instagram since. As for Xia Li, the wrestler reposted a few pictures of the kick but without publicly acknowledging any injuries Martinez may have. Martinez's in-ring partner Jake Atlas did share a noteworthy post after the incident, and hinted at there being a reason for payback, which is presumably about the injury, since nobody actually lost the match.
Given the circumstances of the WWE's storytelling nature, it would only be natural for some to assume the entire injury was just part of the show. With that said, the nature in which the match was abruptly stopped, combined with how the referee continued her count even though Mercedes Martinez's shoulders were never square on the mat, feels like a major indicator that things did not go according to plan. It should be noted that the WWE has not officially confirmed Martinez was hospitalized after the match, and so like many wrestling moments that happen outside the kayfabe, it's all still alleged at this point. However, it has since been reported by Bryan Alvarez of Wrestling Observer Live that Martinez is believed to be doing better this morning.
And even if Mercedes Martinez was taken to a hospital, it could have been more of a precautionary measure than anything more serious, especially considering it was a head injury that could have left her concussed. An unfortunate reality of the WWE is that injuries happen to performers in the ring all the time, and Martinez isn't even the first on-television injury of the year. Monday Night Raw wrestler Humberto Carrillo hurt his knee so badly in a match against Sheamus that the referee had to stop that match immediately. That said, his leg injury ultimately turned out to be a temporary setback, and he was in the ring again in no time at all. We can only hope the same is true for Martinez.
WWE's NXT airs on USA on Tuesdays at 8:00 p.m. ET. While the news of a potential injury is disheartening, fans may take solace in the fact that one WWE superstar who has been injured for a while may soon return.