Industry veterans and fans have noticed a match on AEW Dark: Elevation. It was a match between Athena and indie wrestler Jody Threat which was exceptionally physical with stiff shots and big bumps.
Athena was particularly aggressive in the match with Threat, who was wrestling for the first time in AEW. The crowd was on Jody’s side and gave her a big ovation because it was her hometown, Toronto. This made Athena switch roles to a heel as she is a babyface. She just went ballistic on the home town girl after that.
Athena vs Jody Threat was actually magic because you can watch them swap roles. Jody is supposed to be the heel and attacks her from behind, but the crowd loves Jody too much because she’s the hometown favorite. The second Athena shifts to a vicious heel, LISTEN to the reactions. pic.twitter.com/19aIqcPxD3
— Let Them Wrestle (@LetThemWrestle) October 18, 2022Advertisement
The physicality from Athena started when Threat slipped and missed a spot. She apparently started asking Athena what was next in the match and no sold a clothesline. Then Athena gave Jody some hits that made the audience’s jaws drop. These hits included MMA style elbows and kick to the face, dumping her outside over the top ropes and a hard drop kick that sent her crashing into the audience barricade.
Many industry veterans have commented negatively about Athena’s excessive physicality in the match.
Damn. Does that red headed girl owe #Athena money? One of these days, one of these untrained “wrestlers” will get hurt seriously and @tonykhan and @AEW will be sued. That girl could have been seriously hurt on that outside drop. Tony, please you need a safety manager badly. https://t.co/2LkYFhdKAHAdvertisement
— 𝔻𝕣. 𝔻𝕦𝕥𝕔𝕙 (@DirtyDMantell) October 20, 2022
Although Threat suffered a lot during the match, she seemed to handle it well. Athena even raised Jody’s hand as a sign of respect after the match was over.
There were no reports of backstage altercations between the two and no complaints from either side. However the AEW management did contact each of them after the match to make sure everything was okay between them.
Some even suggest that the excessive force used during the match could be a work. AEW Dark matches are untelevised and only streamed online. They can do nothing much to elevate the performers’ popularity. Therefore both women may have planned this out to get people talking about them. If this is the case, it looks like it has worked.
Threat has only thanked AEW, Toronto and the venue for the opportunity on twitter.
Athena was known as Ember Moon in WWE and is a former NXT Women’s and NXT Women’s Tag Team champion. She was released last year in November.