Cody Rhodes was recently interviewed for Total Wrestling Magazine. He spoke to them about what his dad, The American Dream Dusty Rhodes, would have thought about his current run on the indies.
Cody left the WWE in mid-2016, but Dusty actually thought it would have been prudent for him to leave several years earlier.
“He told me to leave WWE after WrestleMania 28 in Miami, not because he didn’t like WWE, but because he thought we weren’t getting anywhere. He thought we were trending upwards and then all of sudden we were trending downwards and he didn’t want to see that. He didn’t want that for my youth. Wrestling prime is 30-40 and he didn’t want me entering that period on a downer and I understood, I gave it that full college try and to try and get back to trending upwards and there were moments for sure, but it just wasn’t consistent and I think he’d be very happy, he dug independent shows. He used to run an independent promotion himself and I was the referee and it was an absolute blast of a time.”
Some Cody Rhodes fans believe that he was underutilized on the WWE roster. Cody disagrees. He wasn't underutilized, he says, perhaps mis-utilized.
“I feel like I was paid well and they liked Stardust and in the 10 years I was there I wasn’t off a single live event other than a three week period when I was out with my deltoid, which was right when I grew the moustache. I’d never missed a show, I’d been on everything. The last few years I’d been featured in a match on every WrestleMania, I didn’t feel underutilised, I didn’t feel under rated. I just felt that where I was at with Stardust I was unable to shoot Stardust past say where a Cesaro or Owens was and that ship was sinking and I saw a big shiny ship which is this one I’m on now and I made the jump.”
There was a plan for a while that Cody might do a split-personality gimmick, playing Stardust on one show, and himself on the other, switching from Raw to SmackDown. Cody was very excited for the potential this might have for his character. When it fell through, it was a tremendous let down, maybe even the final straw.
“It was gonna happen, it was a matter of they kept saying they were going to do it eventually but they held off and I just didn’t want to wait until eventually, I’m not just happy collecting a cheque, I’m glad I was in WWE for all that time, built an equity but I wanted to do something for me, not financially, but personally. I wanted the change bad, I was going to be on Smackdown as one character and Raw as the other, and it was a beautiful idea but then they decided to not do it anymore.”
"It would have been a cool idea. It was something I was excited for, but when it wasn’t going to happen that made my decision to leave quicker.”
Cody is now on the independent scene, competing in New Japan and Ring of Honor, showing up in TNA every now and then. He'll be facing Kurt Angle in a steel cage match on March 3rd, in what is being billed as Angle's last match on the indy circuit.