Cody Rhodes has undoubtedly been in the news for a few weeks now and even before WrestleMania 38, which was of course where he debuted for WWE in a stellar match with WWE roster ace, Seth Rollins, Cody ultimately returning to the company after a six-year long hiatus. He built his name up on the indie circuit, Impact Wrestling/TNA, ROH, NJPW and helped start AEW during those six years away from WWE.
After word broke that he would be leaving AEW, Cody’s next move was a big question to anyone paying attention, which were of course a lot of pro wrestling fans and journalists alike—myself included obviously. But Cody Rhodes has always been a special pro wrestler in my eyes.
The move to WWE did send messages loud and clear to the pro wrestling world in general, and that was quite clearly: The WWE World Heavyweight Championship certainly means a lot to him and he has justified his move to the company by stating that that championship is certainly in his sites.
Gangrel, who Attitude Era fans will undoubtedly remember, has been on people’s minds a lot as of late as well, and that’s primarily because Edge has been referencing his time in The Brood circa that era a lot in promos lately. The trio also included the legendary Christian Cage. During his time in WWE, he would also re-form The Brood and label it The New Brood, which included the incomparable Hardy Boyz, Matt and Jeff. Edge’s new direction with his character calls to mind his dark side quite a wee bit.
Gangrel of course was the leader of that trio of vampires and a legend in this industry; he still wrestles on the indie circuit. He has been wrestling since 1988 and wrestled for WWE on and off over the years. Recently he sat down with Wrestling Inc. Managing Editor, Nick Hausman for a chat on Wrestling Inc. Daily and had a lot to say on the impression Cody’s move had on the industry. Here’s what he had to say:
“I imagine it just comes down to business, doesn’t it? …I am not a business guy, because if I was I would still be making tons of money somewhere; I just love wrestling. And I think that might have just come down to business…I don’t know the ins and outs, but more than likely it was he wanted a certain amount of money…
And they were probably saying, ‘hey, we’re already giving this guy, we’ve got to deal with this guy, we can’t give anybody a certain amount of money more than this guy, so this is it, this is where you’re at.’ He probably said, ‘okay, fine,’ so things change and he went over there…
I imagine it’s business, the fans, the greatest thing about being a pro wrestler is you can be a babyface one day, and a heel the next. They’ll love you in one company, and hate you in another, that’s the beauty of it. I like to see that kind of emotion in pro wrestling, and I would like to see a lot more magic and mystery in pro wrestling too…
I think it’s cool, I like it, I think it’s good for all wrestling that people are going to cross back over the other direction too. It gives that company credibility.”
via Gangrel on The Wrestling Inc. Daily /Wrestling Inc. (Transcription)
In the end, it comes down to what Dave Meltzer of the Wrestling Observer said a few days back on his Twitter feed:
“…Not everyone is LeBron James, but your point is valid in the sense if you took Leonard or Davis and made them free agents, most teams would have an interest in them…but WWE would be interested in almost any top AEW act right now. Also, AEW would be interested in virtually any WWE top act right now.”via Dave Meltzer on Twitter
In just a mere 3 years, AEW has proven its worth and has indeed made leaps and bounds making it known out there that they are indeed another option for wrestling fans and not only have the fans and wrestlers themselves noticed, but Vince McMahon has obviously noticed, which the Cody Rhodes signing proves perfectly, and in the end, that’s a big deal, which is of course speaking directly to Gangrel’s very poignant opinion.