Cody Rhodes and his wife Brandi Rhodes are no longer part of All Elite Wrestling (AEW). Early this morning, AEW announced that the couple has left the company after helping launch it in 2019. Cody was one of the four founding members of AEW and an executive vice president while Brandi was the chief branding officer. Both also competed in the ring. News broke back in January that Rhodes was operating within AEW without a contract, which he personally later confirmed on-air during an AEW dynamite episode.
“I have immense respect and appreciation for Cody [Rhodes] and Brandi [Rhodes], and I wish them both the best as they move on from AEW. Thank you, Cody and Brandi!” AEW President Tony Khan wrote in a statement. According to Sean Ross Sapp of Fightful Select, Cody Rhodes could return to WWE. Shortly after Khan released his statement, Cody broke his silence on leaving AEW.
Cody Rhodes & Brandi Rhodes Break Their Silence
“I have loved my time at AEW. Amazing locker room, amazing fans, amazing people. The ‘revolution’ was indeed televised, and I’ve been incredibly lucky to be part of that. First, I want to thank Tony Khan. He’s taken the baton and run with it, and it was an honor to work for him and to know him on a personal level. He’s a beautiful soul.
Obviously, I need to thank my incredible wife and the mother of my baby girl, Brandi, for all of her love and support throughout this journey together and the amazing relationships she fostered with Kulture City and the American Heart Association. “Cody Rhodes,Wrestling Inc.
“I also need to thank Nick and Matt Jackson (these two, whether they know it or not, took an undesired and not confident lil cub and gifted me the confidence to become a leader of the pack), Kenneth Omega, Chris Jericho, Chicken…we started the fire.
I must thank Tim W/Keith M/Greg W and the amazing production crew who understood and captured the vision with such grace, I can’t name everybody. But thank you to Megha, Margaret, Harrington, Jeff Jones, Dana, Tony Schiavone, Bern, Raf, and the hardest worker in the game, QT Marshall, for propping me up and kicking me in the ass when I was running on fumes.”Cody Rhodes, Wrestling Inc.
Brandi would later take to Twitter to say her goodbye as well.
This is interesting on so many levels. Because this isn’t a superstar leaving a company, it’s the guy that built a company leaving. If this is a work, that means that Cody Rhodes left just so that he could come back and compete for the world title. Something he promised he wouldn’t do. Which will complete his heel turn. In the past, Khan has been known to play with his talent and work the media. (Look at the CM Punk rumors).
Personally, it would be in poor taste for them to essentially put their hearts in press releases as it refers to their charities, and community outreach programs and initiatives to confirm their exits just to be used as part of a work. That would jeopardize the integrity of the company, charities and initiatives alike.
If Cody Rhodes jumps ship and WWE books him, it will skew the perception of AEW being the place wrestlers want to be to actually wrestle. While WWE’s reputation as the place where you are picked at what some would be considered the industry peak and make the money would be subverted. Looking at it from an insider’s perspective.
If the cornerstone of what is now considered a wrestlers haven, being for wrestlers by wrestlers just ups and leaves it for the competition (WWE), the view of the promotion that is known as THE PLACE to go gets rehabbed instantly. People that aren’t getting tv time may be moved up and infuse a different bit of a new thriving culture, creating another paradigm shift, not only in AEW but in wrestling as a whole. All in all 2022 is the most interesting year for wrestling backstage, in the ring, and in the business world, and we will continue to give you all the info as it happens.
What are your thoughts and feelings about this? Is it a work? Where will Cody Rhodes go? What will happen to AEW, WWE, and wrestling as a whole in the coming months?