Since returning to the Independent scene following her WWE release, Athena (formerly Ember Moon in WWE), hasn't been afraid to take a high risk.
She notably crashed through 20 chairs with Taya Valkyrie during a superplex spot to the outside. Before joining WWE, Athena was no stranger to hardcore matches during her time on the Independent scene. In WWE, women are more protected when it comes to high risk spots in gimmick matches compared to men and what she's able to do in independent matches.
Speaking to Chris Van Vliet on Insight, Athena discussed how she believed things were a little too safe for women in WWE.
"There were times where they were like, 'girls, don't fall over.' It was such a fight to do the Eclipse off the ladder. That was a fight. I tried to do it the first year at Money in the Bank and they were like, 'this is too unsafe, you're gonna hurt yourself.' I go, 'I've done this seven times on the Indies with less safety measures! I'm good.' The next year, there was some stuff that happened, and they're like, 'girls don't fall down and hurt yourselves.' 'Who are you talking to? I've done dumber stuff...' WWE is so careful, mind you, they don't want us to get hurt. On some level, they have to remember that some of us have done the dumb stuff that got us hurt and we learned from that and made it safer. The Eclipse off the ladder the second year, the doors were about to open and Vince was like, 'she can't do it unless I see it first.' Nattie has like one eyelash on, she's running from makeup to do it. We do it one time and he's like, 'Okay, they're fine,'" she recalled.
Athena competed in the 2018 and 2019 women's Money in the Bank ladder matches. She hit the Eclipse in the 2019 Money in the Bank ladder match.
She continued by saing, "Sometimes, it's too much safety, I feel like. He's always looking out for our best interests, but when it comes to the men, they never do that. Doing crazy spots and jumping off of stuff, it's not something the women get to do very often, or rarely. For me to be able to jump off the ladder and do the Eclipse, it was like, 'Are they going to veto this again? Kevin (Owens) jumped off the tron two weeks ago, but I can't jump off a ladder in a ladder match?' It's so weird, the things the guys can do. 'It's Kofi (Kingston), let him do it.' Then the girls are like, 'Okay, ladies, we have to have rehearsal so you don't get hurt.' Sometimes, it's such a double standard. NXT was different because Hunter is like, 'you want to do that, go do it, go have fun, just don't get hurt,' but he trusted us to do it. That was the best part about Hunter's NXT. We not only had the coaching staff behind us, pushing us to do more and push those limits past our gender, we had so much support from every avenue to do what we wanted to do. As soon as Hunter's presence was gone, they were like, 'Ladies, you have three minutes, your time is going to get cut so go as fast as you can.' Sometimes, you just laugh."
Athena noted that the superplex onto 20 chairs was as safe as taking a bump on the ring apron as it's just a flat and hard surface.
Elsewhere during the interview, Athena discussed potentially going to AEW. You can find her full comments by clicking here.
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