The pressure of leading the way is already something Rhodes is feeling.
It is confirmed that closing out night two of WrestleMania 39 is Cody Rhodes challenging Roman Reigns for the Undisputed WWE Universal Championship.
That match is several days away and Rhodes joined Jimmy Traina on the S.I. Media podcast to discuss his return to WWE and his run up until this point.
When asked if becoming Undisputed WWE Universal Champion is a type of pressure he questions himself about, Rhodes expressed that he already feels an immense amount of pressure. He feels he’s been the face of the company, possibly even dating back to his performance at Hell in a Cell against Seth Rollins. Cody did add that this run could also be a case of him just being the shiny, new toy.
This answer might come across extremely dickish, as the only way I can put it out there. A little more prickly, this answer. I don’t think there’s anymore pressure about potentially being the face of the company because respectfully, I feel like for the last four months, I’ve already been the face of the company. Roman (Reigns) is on a, you know, not a part-time schedule, he’s still a full-time superstar and still the champ respectfully. But I make every town, every city and in addition to that, I’ve already felt like the face of the company since perhaps even Hell in a Cell, even while I was injured and maybe that’s just even WWE’s seeing this new, shiny toy that’s come back and they put The American Nightmare everywhere, but I’d say it’s working because we’ve had some unbelievable nights in terms of the WWE audience who’ve never been to the show is unique and is a very family-based audience. You’ve got a dad with two kids and that dad was probably one of those kids, 20 years ago with his parents… I don’t wanna be tacky but if you look through the first four rows, there’s a lot of belief in what I’m doing and it’s visible and all the measurables are there saying that this is working so no, I would feel the same amount of pressure I already feel now, to answer your question, because you can ask every single market rep who works for WWE, you can ask every member of upper management, not only do I ask ‘em how we’re doing, how we can do better, what’d we do last time, what’d we do per head. Not only do I ask all these questions, I let ‘em know how we did that night as well. I try to keep all my receipts in this because who knows, this run, we’ve been on since Hell in a Cell perhaps, maybe even as far back as last year’s WrestleMania, it could end after Los Angeles. You can’t take anything for granted in the world of wrestling and sports entertainment, but I wanna make sure it doesn’t end. I wanna do all I can, I’m not winding down by any means. But again, you don’t know how long you have doing this and no I don’t think I’d feel any more pressure than I do now and to be fair and honest, I already feel an immense amount of pressure.
He gave credit to his WrestleMania opponent, Roman Reigns, and stated that it was big for Reigns to view him as an asset and not an enemy when he returned to WWE.
I almost feel like it’s important and it’s not a conversation I’ve ever had with Roman (Reigns) and if we were friendlier, maybe I would have this conversation with him. Him looking at me like an asset and not an enemy when I came back is huge. I mentioned this the other day. This is such a big gamble. The guy who broke the throne, poked fun, did all these things. Coming back, my life could have been made a living hell. Now I was gonna do everything to (go out) and deliver and the fans are ultimately the barometer here, we’re going off what the fans give us. But, by no means was that the case. Everyone understood it, happy to have me back, treated me like an asset and here we are.
As of this writing, below are the official cards for nights one and two of WrestleMania 39:
Night One (4/1)
- WWE United States Championship: Austin Theory (c) vs. John Cena
- SmackDown Women’s Championship: Charlotte Flair (c) vs. Rhea Ripley
- Undisputed WWE Tag Team Championships: The Usos (Jimmy & Jey Uso) (c) vs. Kevin Owens & Sami Zayn
- Becky Lynch, Lita & Trish Stratus vs. Damage CTRL (Bayley, Dakota Kai & IYO SKY)
- Seth Rollins vs. Logan Paul
- Rey Mysterio vs. Dominik Mysterio
- Braun Strowman & Ricochet vs. The Street Profits (Montez Ford & Angelo Dawkins) vs. Alpha Academy (Chad Gable & Otis) vs. The Viking Raiders (Ivar & Erik)
Night Two (4/2)
- Undisputed WWE Universal Championship: Roman Reigns (c) (w/ Paul Heyman) vs. Cody Rhodes
- Raw Women’s Championship: Bianca Belair (c) vs. Asuka
- WWE Intercontinental Championship — Triple Threat Match: GUNTHER (c) vs. Sheamus vs. Drew McIntyre
- Hell in a Cell Match: Edge vs. Finn Balor
- Brock Lesnar vs. Omos
- Liv Morgan & Raquel Rodriguez vs. Shayna Baszler & Ronda Rousey vs. Sonya Deville & Chelsea Green vs. Natalya & Shotzi
If the quotes in this article are used, please credit SI Media With Jimmy Traina with an H/T to POST Wrestling for the transcriptions.