Ricky Starks Reveals Backstage Reactions To Recent AEW Promo

Ricky Starks turned plenty of heads with his MJF promo on last week's episode of AEW "Dynamite," including some pretty important ones backstage.

Appearing on the latest episode of the "Inside the Ropes" show, Starks spoke with host Alex McCarthy about his feud with Maxwell Jacob Friedman – including the back-and-forth the two wrestlers had in the leadup to their AEW World Championship match this week at Winter Is Coming. Starks ultimately lost the match but said he earned respect backstage in the process.

"I think that last Wednesday I more than proved myself to everybody watching that I can stand toe-to-toe with any of these so-called great promos and do it in my style," Starks said. "I not only proved to people watching but I proved to my boss [Tony Khan] as well what I've been trying to say for the longest time: You've got your Maxes and you've got all these top people, I'm up there just as well."

Starks' heated promo with MJF gave fans one of their first in-depth glimpses at the AEW star's character, getting the chance to be highlighted in an extended segment revolving around the show's main event star in Friedman. Afterward, Starks said MJF was taken aback by his performance and that Khan was also "very happy with it."

"Honestly, I walked back and I was like, 'Okay, that was cool,' and Tony was like, 'Thank you so much, Ricky. That was great. That was a homerun,' " Starks said. "It's cool that he enjoyed it and he approved of it."

Starks added that WWE Hall of Famer Mark Henry, a backstage coach, and commentator for AEW, also came up to him and said: "Wow, I did not expect that. I knew that you could clap back, but I did not expect that."