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Athena Speaks About Differences Between Tony Khan & WWE Management

Athena, or the former Ember Moon of WWE had a lot to say recently about the differences between AEW and WWE, specifically when it came to management and direction from both top honchos. She wasn’t too specific but she does name drop a particular individual that was the exception to all the negative in WWE, and we’ll get to that in just a little bit.

For her part, Athena wrestled in WWE for 7 years or just about, and in that time gained quite the following…predominantly children, who she believes she caters to most, which was why she had so much of a problem with the new direction of NXT 2.0.

She revealed while speaking with Chris Van Vliet a little while back that talent was approached and told to push the sex factor moving forward. This was something she wasn’t at all comfortable with seeing that she did cater to children specifically or predominantly, to use her term. I would like to add that true blue pro wrestling fans and older ones at that also adore and appreciate her. Just to be clear. She’s amongst the top female wrestlers in the industry for sure.

via CVV Clips /YouTube

Regardless, she was happy for her release from the company. This is a woman who takes her craft seriously. She has a school where she teaches the sport and she takes to it with emotion, daring and a care that isn’t always seen. AEW is the perfect place for a person like that, dear readers.

Well…she appeared at Double Or Nothing and made history by doing so and entered into a feud with the Baddies (Red Velvet, Kiera Hogan) and Jade Cargill right after stepping through the door quite literally.

Since debuting she’s already picked up on some major differences between this new boss and her former one. She made the following statement while speaking with NBC Sports Boston:

via Athena on Twitter

“Tony is extremely busy, but my interactions with him have been insanely different than that of my former boss…he’s just excited, he’s pumped, he wants to get everyone pumped up as he is. It’s the first time I think I had a show … He’s just going up to every match like, ‘Let’s go! Let’s get this!’ I’ve never had that. And it’s just energy on cloud nine, every step of the way…

Sometimes, the couple of days I’ve been there, we’re there for like fourteen hours and his energy doesn’t drop. He’s so motivating; he’s so pumped about everything that’s on the TV product, which I’m not used to on any level. Normally it’s like, ‘Alright. Go out there, blah, blah, blah. Cool, you know what you’re doing.’ And then on the other end, you’re getting Tony like, ‘You pumped for this?! You ready to go?!’ And I’m like, ‘Yeah! Let’s go!’ …

I don’t know how to explain it. He’s so high energy and so positive that you just want to feed off that aura. I’m like, ‘I want that caffeine level that you’re at, but I’m afraid I might have a heart attack!’ For fourteen hours, there’s not a drop. Not a drop. And he’s extremely appreciative that everyone is there. I don’t know how to explain it, but so far, I’m just like, amazed. I could people watch Tony all day long because you want to go so much harder for him, out in the ring and stuff…

You’re like, ‘Yeah! He’s pumped! He loves it! Yeah!’ I think the best way to describe it is I think the former place, if you will, demanded perfection…It didn’t matter what curveballs were being thrown at you, there was just very stoic energy of, ‘Alright, this is what we expect out of you. Do it.’ And if you don’t do it, you get ripped a new one. Sometimes it’s like, ‘Okay, cool, we understand problems happen.’ But there was never that high energy…”

-via Athena speaking w/ NBC Sports Boston /Wrestling Inc. (Transcription)

via Official Kicker /YouTube

Athena did specify who specifically was different in WWE…perhaps who had the edge and was a tad more connected to what talent needed backstage.

“Hunter was the exception to that, I will say that. But coming into AEW, you get pumped, you get excited. Every match, he (Tony) is there. He’s in the huddle with everyone. I’m like, ‘Where did you come from?’ I feel like he’s just teleporting backstage; I’ll leave one area and see him talking here, but in some kind of way, he’s doubled in front of me. I’m like, ‘How? You were…’

He cares, and he shows outwardly that he cares. And it’s not demanding perfection, it’s like, ‘Hey, you go out there and do the best damn job. And if it’s perfect, I’m happy. If it’s not, I’m happy. I’m just excited that you’re here, willing to put your body on the line for this company.’ That’s the type of energy. So it’s like, ‘Alright, I’m going to go put my body on the line! Let’s go!’ The energy, the aura backstage, it’s so different, it’s so positive…

Everyone wants to help each other, everyone is just excited to be there, right? Which is weird because I’m not used to that on any level; it’s so exciting. I remember hanging out in the ring one day before the show started…I’m just watching everything, and everyone has smiles on their faces. People were doing random wrestling stuff, like, ‘Okay, I’ve got this idea, blah blah blah.’ ‘Hey, I want to try this!’ No one is wrestling each other on the show at this time but everyone is just having fun and enjoying each other’s company, which is just bizarre, bizarre because I came from a place that was so extremely structured.”

-via Athena speaking w/ NBC Sports Boston /Wrestling Inc. (Transcription)

NEXT: AEW’s Malakai Black Looks Back On The Monumental Black & Gold Era Of NXT

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