Injured ROH Champion returns to AEW Rampage

Anticipation is high for tomorrow’s AEW Full Gear pay-per-view, but AEW had a few more surprises in store ahead of the big event. Tonight’s AEW Rampage had a big return mid-night, all because of a heel turn by Athena. Athena would go on to win her match against Madison Rayne, but then punched the referee and then locked Rayne in a submission, only letting go when Ring of Honor Women’s World Champion Mercedes Martinez came to the ring and made her surprise return from injury.

Martinez has been out since Death Before Dishonor, though the nature of her injury has never been revealed. In September, Tony Khan revealed she was injured during a media call at the time, saying “Many of the best wrestlers in the world are ring of honor champions. Women’s ring of honor champion Mercedes Martinez is actually out with an injury but will be back soon to be.”

That was back in September, and now Martinez is finally making her way back to in-ring action, as she also took part in a taping of AEW Dark. Martinez was a babyface before she got injured, and tonight’s actions have likely earned her a new opponent who is now a heel in Athena. Athena has shown a sharper side, but this was a big step in the heel area.

Martinez is still the ROH Women’s Champion so it looks like Athena might go to that title shot to face Martinez maybe at the next ROH specific pay-per-view although she could always include her at the next AEW payment – also per view.

Martinez went in the ring and had a showdown with Athena, and hopefully we get more of a program between the two moving forward. If we do, it should be a fantastic matchup and it’s certainly a match worthy of a pay-per-view card. You can find the full updated map for Full Gear below.

Pre-Show: Eliminator Tournament – Ricky Starks vs Brian Cage

Pre-Show: Orange Cassidy (C), Best Friends, Rocky Romero and Danhausen vs The Factory

AEW World Championship Match: Jon Moxley (C) vs MJF

Intermediate AEW Women’s Championship Match: Toni Storm (C) vs Jamie Hayter

TNT Championship Game: Wardlow (C) vs Samoa Joe vs Powerhouse Hobbs

TBS Championship Match: Jade Cargill (C) vs Nyla Rose

AEW Tag Team Championship Match: The Critically Acclaimed (C) vs Swerve in Our Glory

ROH World Championship Match: Chris Jericho (C) vs Bryan Danielson vs Sammy Guevara vs Claudio Castagnoli

AEW Trios Championship Match: Death Triangle vs The Elite

Eliminator Tournament Final: Ethan Page vs Brian Cage or Ricky Starks

Sarah to Dr. Britt Baker, DMD

Steel Cage Match: Jungle Boy vs Luchasaurus

Sting and Darby Allin vs. Jeff Jarrett and Jay Lethal

Are you excited for AEW Full Gear? Let us know in the comments and as always you can discuss all things wrestling with me on Twitter @MattAguilarCB!

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