Late WWE Hall of Famer Bobby "The Brain" Heenan is universally revered as one of the greatest managers in the illustrious history of professional wrestling, and this sentiment is shared by current wrestling star Cody Rhodes.
In a candid and enthusiastic interview with Sports Illustrated, Rhodes left no doubt about his admiration for Heenan's managerial prowess. "Bobby Heenan is the greatest manager of all time," Rhodes declared confidently. While acknowledging Paul Heyman's significant contributions to the industry, Rhodes drew a distinction between the two, emphasizing Heyman's role as a disruptor and creator of alternative projects that revolutionized the wrestling landscape.
Rhodes: Heenan's Managerial Brilliance Shines
Heyman's impact in wrestling is undeniable, particularly with his instrumental role in elevating Roman Reigns to new heights. As Roman's real-life representative and on-screen advocate, Heyman's influence spans various aspects of the business.
However, in terms of pure managerial ability, Rhodes firmly believes that Heenan stands head and shoulders above the rest. Rhodes supported his claim by highlighting Heenan's remarkable talent for making stars out of those he managed.
He stated that anyone fortunate enough to work with Heenan was inevitably elevated to stardom, a testament to the manager's unparalleled abilities in guiding and promoting his clients. The comparison between Heenan and Heyman arose playfully during the interview, as Rhodes lightheartedly corrected the host for not referring to him as "the most popular wrestler of all time." This playful exchange triggered memories for the host, Jimmy Traina, who recounted a past tribute piece he had written about Bobby Heenan, hailing him as "the greatest manager in pro-wrestling history." However, Traina revealed that when he later had Heyman as a guest on his podcast, Heyman vehemently disagreed with that characterization, launching into a spirited and impassioned defense of his own managerial legacy.
The debate over who holds the title of "Greatest Manager of All Time" remains an engaging topic in the wrestling community. While Paul Heyman's contributions are exceptional and have significantly impacted the industry, Cody Rhodes remains steadfast in his conviction that Bobby "The Brain" Heenan's unparalleled managerial brilliance makes him the quintessential manager in wrestling history.
Both Heenan and Heyman have left an indelible mark on the business, etching their names into the annals of professional wrestling for generations to come.