An AEW star has addressed the criticism towards their new in-ring style.
Over the past several weeks, Athena has started to transform before the fans’ eyes with a slow burn heel turn that has seen her working more aggressively and hard hitting.
The shift started on AEW Dark, but the turn was completed on the November 18 edition of AEW Rampage when she faced Madison Rayne and then attacked referee Aubrey Edwards.
Appearing on Busted Open Radio, Athena was asked about her change in style and criticism towards it. She answered:
“Cause I feel like it.”
“Sometimes, nice guys finish last. Sometimes, you get frustrated and it’s hard because you’re trying to find an opportunity to not get lost in the shuffle because at AEW, there are so many talented women just across the board and it’s like, what can you do to stand out?”
In regards to her thought process just a few months into her run with All Elite Wrestlling, the former NXT Women’s Champion stated:
“You’re asking questions like, why am I stuck in this position? Why is this happening to me? Am I not good?”
“Finally, you have to just say ‘eff it.’ That’s basically what I’ve done. I’m going to do what I do best.”
“For ten years, before I signed to WWE, I was probably one of the most notorious heels, I worked my entire Indie career as the bad guy.”
“I even got the nickname ‘The American Joshi’ because of my hard-hitting style. People forget about that. Through my entire TV career, it’s something I always wanted to get back to.”
Addressing the double standard when it comes to hard hitting matches for men and women in wrestling, Athena said:
“The girls can hit just as hard as the guys. I have to sit there and see Jon Moxley and (Chris) Jericho and (Wheeler) Yuta, all of these guys hit the tar out of each other. I guarantee you, if I was a man, there wouldn’t be as much backlash or anything about that.”
“It’s all these old bloated farts that want to sit there and tell us we need to look pretty. They complain when it’s a dance, they complain when we hit hard. Get over it.”
“We’re out here to be just as good as the guys. We give it our all and put in all this time and effort to hone our craft and I feel we’re under-appreciated when we do things like that.”
Athena will face Mercedes Martinez for the Ring of Honor Women’s World Championship at ROH Final Battle 2022 on Saturday, December 10. For the full lineup for the show, click here.
Transcription via Fightful
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