Cody Rhodes thinks he was in his own way creatively at times in ROH & AEW

Originally published at Cody Rhodes thinks he was in his own way creatively at times in ROH & AEW

Rhodes touches on the creative freedom he had in ROH and AEW, his comeback to WWE and more. 

Cody Rhodes is inching close to two years since his return to WWE at WrestleMania 38. Rhodes is currently a part of the Monday Night Raw roster and is scheduled to appear on the September 11th episode of the program. 

As Rhodes continues to make the media rounds, he sat down with Dale Earnhardt Jr. to record an episode of The Dale Jr. Download podcast. One of the topics Rhodes dove into was the creative freedom he’s had at points in his career. He feels he was in his own way at times in Ring of Honor and AEW. 

He stated that ROH took great care of him, but let him do whatever he wanted on the creative front. As an example, he cited having two people in bear costumes with him. He said that’s an example of creative freedom gone too far. On the AEW front, Rhodes said he was making a lot of decisions and doing it his way.

Sometimes I get in my own way, when it comes to my own creative and there’s a prime example. When I was in this company named Ring of Honor, wonderful company that really took care of me and Joe Koff was the guy who got me, amazing. But they just let me do whatever. A WWE guy, people are coming to see him, you know, because they were smaller crowds. He’s got a big autograph line, let’s whatever and one of the things I did was I had two mascots that were people in bear suits. It didn’t make a lick of sense and they’d be at the signing stamping with me. One was a business bear, one was the drug-free bear. It was all this nonsensical — it stemmed off a YouTube series so it had roots, but if I look at the photos and you see me with these two bears behind me, that’s what creative freedom gone too far — that’s what it looks like. I loved it (he laughed). Even my time at AEW as Executive Vice President President, also in my way a little bit. Someone else make a decision for me here, you know? Because at that point, I had made all these decisions. I’m making it, I’m doing it my way. You need guidance, you need those people who’ve been there and done it and yeah, so I had some big home runs and some big misses.

Further commenting on his time in AEW, Rhodes felt he was not good at formatting shows. He added that he has a new respect for the writers of WWE. When he was outside the company, he thought having a team of writers was not a good idea. 

Rhodes realized through his on trial and error that he could cut a great promo but can also fail in that situation. He added that it would have been nice to have someone tighten up what he was saying or have him say it in a different way. 

I have a whole new respect for this writing team that WWE has; Ed Koskey, Ryan Ward, Ryan Callahan, my guy Brian. I had a whole new respect for them because you gotta write — that somebody’s gotta write these guys’ ideas, somebody has to format. Formatting a show which I — that when I was away, I formatted the shows at AEW for a hot minute and then quickly realized I wasn’t great at that. 

And when I was away from WWE, I thought the writing team was the dumbest ever. ‘But why did you need 40 people?’ I thought, ‘Why do you need all this? Why do you need all that?’ And then I realized through trial and error, doing my own interviews, I can hit a home run on my own but also, I am capable of a catastrophic strikeout at the plate and maybe it would have been nice to have somebody there go, just don’t say this. Say it a little differently.

Speaking about his current run in WWE, Rhodes said it has exceeded his expectations. If it all ended immediately, he’d be grateful. 

I feel this run (in WWE) has exceeded my expectations in every way, just because I’m experiencing things that only my heroes ever got to experience. I’m in on the high level discussions, I’m hearing things that I can’t — I always wanted to be. Again, I always wanted to be the starting quarterback. That’s what I wanted to be and being in a position where you’re real close to that and you know, as I say, Roman (Reigns) is the starting quarterback. He really is but when you’re right there and you’re able to offer something so unique and so different. The run has really exceeded my expectations, so much so that I have the thought that if it ends tomorrow, thank gosh I had it. Unbelievable. Thank you fans for having me. I’m gonna tell them every night, ‘I love you guys. Thank you.’ I have just a different outlook and different perspective. I’m of the thought it could all end tomorrow always and lately it’s getting bigger and bigger…

At WWE Payback, Rhodes said he cashed in his ‘chips’ to get Jey Uso to Monday Night Raw. With that, a talent from Raw is being sent to Friday Night SmackDown

If the quotes in this article are used, please credit The Dale Jr. Download with an H/T to POST Wrestling for the transcriptions.