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Willow Nightingale addresses online criticism of street fight

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An AEW star has addressed the online criticism with which they were faced following a match on AEW Rampage.

On the January 13 episode of AEW Rampage, Ruby & Willow Nightingale faced the team of Anna Jay A.S & Tay Melo in a Street Fight that saw Soho and Nightingale pick up the win.
Nightingale appeared on The Sessions with Renee Paquette and spoke about the match, covering some of the more contentious moments.
Speaking about the emotional impact of the match, the blood and the powerbomb off the entrance ramp that saw Anna Jay land beyond the table, saying:

“Very emotional (is how I felt after the Street Fight on AEW Rampage). The toughest part for me is that I like to uphold my work and what I do in a wrestling ring to a certain standard and that includes the way I execute moves, the safety of my opponents and generally, if I just feel like it clicked, did it flow well? Did it feel right?
And at the end of the match, I definitely know that it was something very special but I think obviously, that one, Ruby [Soho] was bleeding like crazy which I looked over at her and I was like, ‘You look awesome’ right in the middle of the match. When I finally saw her covered (in blood), I was like, ‘You look awesome.’
A lot of people online maybe didn’t take it that way. But I am like, what a badass and the table spot with Anna [Jay], right?

That has been a big thing and before even getting anybody’s response to it, it was the thing that when I walked back through the curtain, I was immediately like, ‘Where is Anna? Is she okay?’ And she was like, ‘I’m fine. I’m gonna go to the doc right now because they have to check me out but I’m okay’ and I’m like, ‘Are you sure!?’
“And checking in on everybody else and checking in with our producer and they take us back and stuff but it was just like, to me, those are the two things that I was just most worried about and it left me very emotional because I felt like I was just worried about the other people I was in the ring with and I don’t think I upheld the elements that I respect or expect from myself.”
She would reveal that there had been an understanding that one woman from each team would be allowed to bleed during the match, though this would be seen as beyond the pale for some wrestling fans who were critical of women bleeding, despite accepting it in men’s matches.

Nightingale would go on to explore this, stating:
“We (Nightingale, Anna Jay, Tay Melo & Ruby Soho) were honestly all very excited to be given the opportunity to do something like this. Anna and Tay have already done this a year ago on television.
“They had a lot of fun with it and there are limits, I guess, on how grotesque it’s allowed to be and I can only speak from my experience. I don’t know if this is the case with other matches, either other tag matches or men’s wrestling or any — I don’t know what those conversations are like.

“I only know the conversations that we had and for us, it was one person from each team was allowed to bleed. We all wanted to get our hands dirty and we all wanted to do crazy stuff and it was like, we can’t go overboard so we were like, ‘Okay, understood’ and we didn’t have to worry about it because Ruby bled enough for everybody but I mean, I thought it was awesome, I thought she looked killer, she thought she looked great.
“She had to get stitched up after. I held her hand as they injected the anaesthetic and everything and stuff. I was like, ‘(gasps), oh my God. You’re so tough.’ But we were just really excited about everything and I think that if people are getting their panties in a bunch about it, that’s the least of your concerns.”
She would conclude with a salient point about women bleeding, explaining:

“We bleed every single month, nobody talks about that. I’m sure if that had happened or whatever, people would make a big deal about that too, right?
“If somebody were to bleed through their gear…
“We bleed the same as men do. We take the same bumps in the ring they do, we’re at the same risks as they are so I don’t understand (why) there has to be a double standard about physically seeing blood.”

Nightingale would also say that she “at peace” with the other women in the Street Fight and, despite the backlash, she’s ready to “recollect and think” about her next move in AEW and beyond it.