Saturday, July 2 2022

Maria Kanellis saw the fruits of some of her hard work pay off on Tuesday night. Former Ring Of Honor Women’s World Champion Roxanne Perez (fka Rok-C) defeated Tiffany Stratton in the finals of the first-ever WWE NXT Women’s Breakout tournament. Perez was at the heart of the ROH Women’s Division while Kanellis led it, eventually becoming the ROH Women’s Champion, and Kanellis sent a short but sweet message to her former division ace.

Maria Kanellis has made the ROH Women’s Division her personal project in 2021, and under her leadership, the once maligned Women of Honor Division has transformed into one of the company’s highlights in 2021. This exceptional era centered on the young upstart now known as Roxanne Perez. in WWE NXT.

During Maria’s tenure, Perez won the ROH Women’s World Championship Tournament, which led to a 119-day run with the title that lasted until the end of the Sinclair Broadcast era. During this reign, she also won Female Wrestler of the Year and Best New Star at ROH’s Year-End Awards. If Maria, Perez, and the rest of the ROH roster hadn’t been released before the originally scheduled break, who knows how far Maria would have taken Perez as the franchise face of the division?

Roxanne lost the ROH Women’s World Championship to Deonna Purrazzo shortly before Perez’s signing with WWE was announced. As bittersweet as it must be, Maria seems thrilled that big business saw in Perez what Kanellis saw. Her young junior now has the ability to “win” an NXT Women’s Championship match at any time she chooses.

Since leaving ROH, Maria has been alongside husband Mike Bennett in IMPACT Wrestling, where he is part of the Honor No More faction of disgruntled former ROH talent.

Although Maria has yet to be involved with Tony Khan’s Ring Of Honor revival, she is open to working with them. Tony Khan had been in touch ahead of April’s Supercard of Honor, and the two sides were trying to find time to “phone and chat further”.

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