(NEXSTAR) — Professional wrestler Big E broke his neck during a live broadcast of WWE’s “SmackDown” from Birmingham, Alabama, he confirmed to his Twitter followers shortly after the incident.
Big E, whose real name is Ettore Ewen, was wrestling with fellow WWE wrestler Ridge Holland during Friday’s broadcast when the injury occurred. In footage from the match that was later shared online by fans, Big E could be seen landing on his head after an attempt by Holland to perform a suplex outside of the ring.
A pro-wrestling fan account later claimed that Big E was seen being carried out on a stretcher after the match, at one point giving a “thumbs up” as he was being brought backstage.
Later that night, Big E shared a video update on his Twitter account.
“I can’t thank all of you beautiful people enough for all of your concern and your messages. It’s very heartwarming,” said Big E from what appeared to be a stretcher or a hospital bed.
“I can move all my digits, you see that? That’s nice. That’s always a good thing,” he said while wiggling his fingers for the camera. “Strength feels fine. But unfortunately, right now, they tell me my neck is broken. So there’s that. But once again, thank you everybody, I’m going to be all right. I’ll be good. Don’t worry. Go to sleep. Don’t worry about old me.
“But for real, thank you. And I appreciate all of you. For real.”
“Sending you so much love and light E!! Heal well my friend!” the Bella twins wrote.
The WWE also retweeted Big E’s original video update, which had amassed more than 100,000 likes as of Saturday morning.
Ewen, 36, had previously played football for the University of Iowa, Nexstar’s WHBF reported. He began his career with the WWE in 2009.