WWE wrestler Big E breaks his neck on Smackdown

Professional wrestler Big E is recovering in hospital after breaking his neck during a television show in Alabama.

Wearing a neck brace in a video posted to social media, Big E, real name Ettore Ewen, said his C1 and C6 vertebrae had been fractured during an episode of Smackdown for World Wrestling Entertainment (WWE).

Despite the fractures, Big E said he had received “good news, all things considered”.

“I don’t have any damage to my spinal cord, no ligament damage and no surgery, which I am thankful for,” he said.

Big E is a former WWE champion, winning the title last September before losing the belt in January.

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In an earlier video posted to his Twitter page on Friday, Big E said he had feeling in his hands.

“I can move all of my digits… that’s nice. That’s a good thing,” he said.

“I’m going to be alright. I’m going to be good.

“Don’t worry about old me.”

Many current wrestlers sent messages of support to Big E following his diagnosis.

Current WWE Raw women’s champion Becky Lynch called Big E one of the “best humans in the world”.

“I’m hoping you’ve been keeping it a secret that you have wolverine-esque healing powers,” Lynch wrote.

Former WWE champion Drew McIntyre said he had visited his fellow wrestler in hospital.

“Even in that situation you couldn’t take the smile off his face,” he wrote. “He really is amazing.”

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