Brandi Rhodes has opened up about how she never wanted to be a ring announcer and that wasn’t her plan when she broke into wrestling.
Rhodes was known as Eden Stiles in WWE, she would begin ring announcing regularly for SmackDown in October 2014.Speaking to Renee Paquette on her ‘Oral Sessions’ podcast, Rhodes gives some insight into how she ended up ring announcing and how that was not part of her plan.
“I did FCW in Tampa.So, moved to Tampa, started training.It was great, I had Norman Smiley, Dusty, it was a really, really good group of coaches.Not a lot of girls were there at the time.There was Trinity [Naomi] and AJ [Lee], Aksana, Celeste [Kaitlyn], Su Yung.That was pretty much it, just a small group…I was learning with them then I got called up on the road because somebody did some kind of research and figured out that I was a broadcaster.
They needed a – I guess they’d just let go of a ring announcer – they needed a new female ring announcer.So I went up and announced and everybody was like ‘cool, come back next week.’And then I just kept announcing and then they told me I couldn’t train.They were like ‘you’re gonna get hurt training and we need you as an announcer.’It just dragged on for so many years of announcing.”
Brandi Rhodes left WWE in May 2016, shortly after her husband, Cody Rhodes, left the company.She joked at the time that she never wanted to ring announce again, and she focussed on her in-ring career as well as accompanying Cody to the ring for his matches.Rhodes, however, would find herself ring announcing at the start of AEW’s pandemic shows when they had a skeleton staff working the events.
Rhodes would address the perception of her as a ring announcer-turned-wrestler. Explaining how she is back doing what she entered the wrestling business to do:
“I think people think that I was always supposed to be an announcer and then, like strong-armed myself into being a wrestler.But that’s just backward; I was supposed to be a wrestler and I just fought for getting back to that.”
Credit: Oral Sessions