One of the big surprises coming out of SummerSlam was the main roster debut of the former Io Shirai, now going by IYO SKY. The former NXT Women’s champion debuted as part of a new stable led by Bayley and also features the returning Dakota Kai.
In a set of recent interviews, SKY got to discuss her return from injury and her new moniker on the Main Roster.
In an interview with Tokyo Sports, SKY shares how her injury happened at NXT Stand & Deliver:
“When I flew in a moonsault outside the ring against Kay Lee Ray, I hit my foot on the announcer’s table and broke my right ankle and had to have surgery. I was referred to a “master ankle surgeon” in Alabama, who is a WWE official. Now I have one bolt in to hold the bone in place. I was unable to put any weight on my right leg for about a month, and I had to use a crutch and a wheelchair. It took me about three months to be able to put my full weight on it.” – (Fighftul)
Since her return, SKY has been a part of the ongoing WWE Women’s Tag Team tournament and alongside Kai, they are the first team to qualify for the finals. This partnership wasn’t the only change implemented as SKY spoke about the decision behind her name change:
“I think the image of the previous “Shirai” can be conveyed in kanji to Japanese people, but that is not the case in the United States. I think it is a good name because the “sky” in it conveys the image. The first letter of “Io” was capitalized and the second letter was lower-case “Io. So it looked like a lowercase L and O (lo), or like a number, and some people misread it. Now it’s all capitalized “IYO,” which I think makes it easier to understand.” – (Fighftul)
The name changes for NXT Talent as they head to the main roster has often been criticized so it is refreshing to see another reason behind it and it’s hard to fault this explanation from SKY’s perspective.
While out with an injury, rumors had circulated that SKY’s contract was due to expire and that she was on her way out. While SKY did debunk these rumors in her own way back in July as seen here, she does confirm in a recent interview with WWE After the Bell that the thought had crossed her mind.
“Yeah. I’ve been here four years. I came here by myself. I don’t have family here and that time is so tough. I tried to think, should I stay here more or not. I got injured and after surgery, that time was thinking about my life again.” – SKY
The full excerpt of the interview with Bayley, Dakota Kai, and IYO SKY can be seen below:
IYO SKY and Dakota Kai will compete next week for the vacant WWE Women’s Tag Team championships with their opponents being determined tonight on Smackdown. Looking past that, the trio have a tall task ahead of them as they face the team of Alexa Bliss, Asuka, and RAW Women’s Champion Bianca Belair at Clash at the Castle on 3rd September.
How are you enjoying the current main roster run for SKY? Share your thoughts and predictions for the trio’s future below!