Seth Rollins suffered a catastrophic knee injury in November 2015 while wrestling Kane in Dublin, Ireland. The injury caused Rollins to miss several months of action while he physically recovered from the devastation. However, recovering from the mental aspect of the injury was something entirely different and is an ongoing process.
Rollins recently took part in an interview with The Cage where he addressed his past and future, so the knee injury that changed his career naturally came up. Rollins said that the injury, which saw him tear his ACL, MCL, and meniscus, caused him to doubt himself for the first time in his career.
According to Rollins, "It was a pretty devastating knee injury with the ACL, MCL, meniscus all getting ripped and having to be surgically repaired. There's a lot of doubt as far as where do I fit in when I come back? Can I physically handle the wear and tear of what we do? Am I going to be the same performer I was before? Am I going to be skittish? A lot of confidence needed to be rebuilt from a lot of different areas, and I'm still working on that, but at the same time I do think a lot of those questions have been answered so for me that was probably the one time in the last six, seven, or eight years where I've really been like 'can I go compete at the level I want to compete at?'"
Athletes often comment on the mental aspect of performing again after suffering an injury like this that can happen without any physical contact and out of nowhere. Rollins suffered the injury while executing a routine sunset flip out of the corner, something he has done hundreds (if not thousands) of times throughout his career.
It was evident watching Rollins during his initial return in 2016 that he was a little skittish about his recovered knee. Though he did still use many of the same high flying moves that he did prior to the injury, there was a noticeable drop in the frequency of some of them. One certainly can't blame him for that. Of late, though, Rollins appears to have his confidence back. There's not a noticeable difference in his style now versus pre-injury other than dropping the Pedigree as a finisher (a move that is particularly hard on the knees).