Joey Mercury made waves at the end of 2019 by revealing text message exchanges between himself and ROH General Manager Greg Gilleland. A big point of frustration for Mercury was ROH's lack of concussion protocol, which was also an issue for Women of Honor Champion Kelly Klein.
According to Klein, she was not treated properly for a concussion suffered against Lana Austin. ROH COO Joe Koff gave his side of the story, saying they take all injuries very seriously and wrestlers are treated by medical professionals. You can view their entire exchange by clicking here.
Speaking to Chuck Carroll of CBS Baltimore, ROH World Champion PCO weighed in on how ROH handles safety in the company.
I just think it is a sad story," PCO said about Mercury posting the text exchange. "I thought that person had so much to give to the business. So valuable, great mind. But I think it was a tough time of his life or something. Most, I would say, if not the whole company was kind of shocked. We were shocked to hear things like that. I don’t want any beef with anybody. I can only talk for myself."
He then went into a story of how he was taken care of after a scary spot.
"I did a dive one night where usually we have two rows of mat on the outside of the ring. Instead of diving on the guy, I dive on this space and I hit the cement floor and I hit my head hard and get 17 stitches in my eye. The ref wants me to stop the match. I said, 'No, I’m finishing the match. I’m not getting out of there.' But everybody was pulling on me to get out of there. But being PCO, there was no way. I never got out of the match. And so I was going to finish that match no matter what," he recalled. "And it’s part of my life, and it’s part of my character, as it’s part of who I am. So I finished the match, and as soon as I got on the other side (there were EMTs)… There is always two, three guys that they have a minimum of knowledge about health and care and things like that. They called me to the hospital right away and put stuff on my eyes to stop the bleeding. Everything was so professional. Then I had two people from the dojo that brought me to the hospital and stayed with me the whole time. I was totally conscious. They did the stitches, they always wanted to make sure I was all fine. They put me through a CAT scan, which costs tons of money. They never charged me for one thing. They sent an agent after the show was done. They took care of everything, signed the papers, brought me back to the hotel, made sure I was okay. [Whenever I get] a little banged up or something, I always get a phone call. 'Are you good? Are you okay?' And the next day, 'Thanks for what you’ve done.' They are nothing but a first-class organization."
PCO concluded by saying, "So I don’t know why he said those things. I don’t know if it might’ve been some frustration because things weren’t going the way that that person was hoping. Was it a personal vendetta? I don’t know what it was. I can’t talk for that guy. And I love him to death, but from my side, it has been nothing but first-class from Ring of Honor. From my signing to every event and to everything that they do."
ROH has not made its concussion protocol public. An ROH spokesperson told Sports Illustrated that talent is given immediate attention when an injury is reported.
PCO was in action on Saturday, Jan. 11, successfully defending the ROH World Title against RUSH at ROH Saturday Night at Center Stage. You can view full results from the show by clicking here.