Cody Rhodes, in a candid discussion on "Insight with Chris Van Vliet," opened up about his time with All Elite Wrestling (AEW) and how he believes his wrestling took a backseat during his tenure as the company's former Executive Vice President.
Reflecting on his experience, Rhodes acknowledged that one of his biggest mistakes was underestimating the impact of reduced in-ring performances. He admitted, "I think that the wrestling took a backseat right away because I thought – my bigger mistake and this wasn't an AEW mistake, this was a Cody mistake – my biggest mistake was thinking I'll stay as good as I am in the ring only wrestling twice, three times, maybe just once a month." Offering advice to fellow wrestlers, Rhodes emphasized the importance of live events in honing one's craft.
He asserted that performing in front of a live audience is an invaluable learning experience and crucial for developing the ability to connect with fans in a more organic and immediate manner.
Rhodes Challenging Impact
Rhodes further elaborated on the challenging impact of the lack of live events during his time in AEW.
He candidly admitted that not having regular live performances affected his wrestling skills and even noticed similar declines in some of the industry's top talents. The absence of live events posed a unique obstacle for performers to maintain their peak performance levels and adapt to the energy and feedback of a live crowd.
During his stint with AEW, Rhodes had a notable storyline involving his pursuit of the AEW World Heavyweight Title against then-champion Chris Jericho at the Full Gear pay-per-view in 2019. Despite not winning the championship, Rhodes later expressed regret over the creative decision in subsequent interviews.
His final match with AEW took place on the January 26, 2022 "Dynamite: Beach Break" special. Rhodes eventually made his highly anticipated return to WWE at WrestleMania 38 on April 2, 2022, where he faced off against Seth Rollins.
Addressing the speculation surrounding his departure from AEW, Rhodes mentioned feeling a "fog of information" surrounding the circumstances of his exit. In conclusion, Cody Rhodes' interview shed light on the complexities and challenges he faced during his time at AEW, emphasizing the significance of live events for wrestlers' growth and development.
His candid insights offer valuable lessons for aspiring wrestlers and provide a deeper understanding of the intricacies within the world of professional wrestling.