"The Champions [Part 1]" opens with an attempted robbery by a few thieves on a bus. One of the men holds a knife to the throat of the driver and orders the people on the bus to empty their pockets. Unknown to the robbers, Black Canary is a passenger on the bus. She sneaks out of a window and climbs across the top of the boss, then dropping in by the door to corner the criminals. A struggle ensues, leaving Canary bruised but, as she says, "You should see the other guys."
The scene then cuts to a space launch, where a space shuttle is flying through space with an astronaut outside of the craft when there is a sudden explosion.
Back at Oliver Queen's house, he is practicing a trick shot with his bow and arrow when Dinah (Black Canary) arrives home in her beaten state. She explains that she feels fine, though, and feels somewhat excited and vindicated by the ordeal, following her terrible assault in "The Longbow Hunters" and seeing a psychiatrist during the events of the previous arc, "Hunters Moon." Oliver and Dinah become intimate for the first time since the aforementioned "Longbow Hunters" miniseries. In the aftermath, they see the falling debris in flame from the satellite that comes crashing to earth, and mistakenly think it is a falling star.
Later, Ollie suits up and goes out for patrol. He accosts a couple of criminals, but is suddenly knocked unconscious by one of them when he is clubbed in the back of the head with a small bat. He awakes a bit later to see a plainly dressed man in glasses calling himself "Mr. Joshua." The man explains to Oliver that he had him knocked out because he is in need of aid in the wake of the tragedy with the explosion of the satellite.
He explains to Green Arrow that the pod landed just off the coast of Washington, and they know exactly where it is. The problem lies in the fact that the Chinese have a navy in the area and are claiming the experiment as their own, although it was a joint experiment. The pod contained a terribly powerful biochemical weapon that they fear could fall into the wrong hands, or mistakenly be activated by a civilian. An argument ensues, with Joshua admitting that Eddie Fyers was actually his first choice for the mission, but Green Arrow grudgingly accepts the task of finding the object to stop the military from having to get involved.
Ollie is shown on a boat on his way to the site, and the issue ends with showing a sniper in the distance having Oliver Queen in his cross-hairs. To be continued...