During his time in the NFL, Quinn Ojinnaka earned his keep by performing the grueling (and often thankless) tasks of an offensive lineman. He was a versatile guard/tackle who was capable of filling in when needed, and typically not someone whom the media watched closely.
Ojinnaka's journey into pro wrestling, however, has shown him what it's like to be a star.
After two years with the wrestling company Ring of Honor, Ojinnaka, who goes by "Moose" in the ring, became the subject of widespread speculation when his last contract expired. Dubbed the biggest name in the sport's free agency, it was unclear whether he'd re-sign with ROH or head elsewhere. Rumors swirled; Ojinnaka remained coy on social media.
The answer came last Tuesday night, as Moose made a surprise appearance on IMPACT WRESTLING's live show, Destination X, confirming he joined the company TNA. He surprised fans by interrupting the Title vs. Title Main Event, showed off his new finishing move, The Gamebreaker, and took out both wrestlers to end the night.
"It was the first time in about two years I had nerves running through my body," Ojinnaka, who spent four years with the Falcons, said. "I was shaking. It's always a great experience when my music hits and I walk out there. It's a new chapter and I can't wait to see where it takes me. It was definitely amazing. It was a surreal experience"
Ojinnaka's transition to a new home marks a big step in his career. At TNA, the second-biggest wrestling company out there, he'll get to face top competition on a regular basis. He'll receive plenty of exposure, too, thanks to TNA's broadcast deal and production value.
"It was a bit stressful because of all the craziness that came with it, but I feel like I made the right decision," he said. "I'm with TNA and ready to roll."
Fans can tune into IMPACT WRESTLING Thursday nights starting on July 21 at 8 p.m. ET, only on Pop TV.
Photo credit: Bob Mulrenin