On last week’s episode of ROH, Billie Starkz challenged ATHENA for the Women’s World Championship at Final Battle. After weeks of humiliation and M.I.T. sessions, Minion 400,237 3/4 finally had enough. She attacked ATHENA and then demanded a match from Tony Khan against her tormentor.
On episode 41, Starkz opened the show by defeating Dani Mo in just over a minute. Following her victory, the champion attacked Starkz. She planted her protégé directly onto her title. The two continued to brawl outside the ring and also took out some security guards.
In a backstage interview with Minion Training valedictorian, Lexy Nair, ATHENA announced that she will main event Final Battle with Starkz. The women will make history by main eventing two consecutive pay-per-views. In July, ATHENA main evented Death Before Dishonor with Willow Nightingale.
When Nair asked ATHENA why she attacked Starkz, “The Fallen Goddess” said that Nair’s fellow “Minion In Training” betrayed them. She coerced Nair into saying she liked the beatdown on her friend. She had more news for her bestie: Nair will be the special ring announcer for the main event.
Last week, I made the case for ATHENA and Starkz to headline Final Battle. This has been the most important, entertaining story in ROH for months. Starkz was thrown into the fire by being paired with the best women’s champion in the world. She has stepped up and is ready to go toe-to-toe with the champion.
The rise of Starkz and the dominance of the #ForeverChampion has been an excellent story and they earned the main event spot (you’ll hear some naysayers say it’s only because Kingston will likely defend the ROH Championship at Worlds End and who knows if an injured MJF will ever step foot in an ROH ring).
Including Nair in the main event is important to the story. She has been a huge part of ATHENA’s story her entire reign. The champ’s bestie has helped tell ATHENA’s story, especially on shows where she didn’t compete. Putting her in “minion training” to both push Starkz and support her added another layer to the story. Nair’s growth over the last year is undeniable, too, and she’s as much a part of ATHENA and Starkz’s story as they are.
ATHENA has been the anchor of both the women’s division and the promotion for months. I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again: she is ROH’s brightest and biggest star. She is going into Final Battle undefeated in singles competition in ROH-sanctioned matches.
Starkz looks to be the one to be the “one” in her singles record and to be the one to finally dethrone her. No other wrestlers or stories can close this show. I look forward to the women delivering on a big stage once again.