AEW Executive Vice President Cody Rhodes is steadily becoming one of the most recognisable faces in professional wrestling.
The former AEW TNT Champion has seen his star continue to rise since leaving WWE in 2016, and was recently involved in a feud with NBA legend Shaquille O’Neal. The rivalry concluded with Rhodes putting Shaq through a table on the March 3rd episode of Dynamite, as he and Red Velvet were defeated by Shaq and Jade Cargill. The match garnered attention not only in the world of pro wrestling, but also in the wider media sphere.
Speaking on the It’s Our House Podcast former WCW President Eric Bischoff has revealed that Rhodes has the potential to become wrestling’s next big cross-over star, comparing him to John Cena.
“But just know that there’s a lot of people that I hold in such high regard and have so much respect for and I think are so valuable as performers and human beings. I’m gonna offend those people, I apologize. But, if, if I was in Las Vegas and I had one $100 bill, and I was forced to place a bet on one person – I put it on Cody Rhodes.”
“I think when you talk about somebody who has the potential to transcend the business, that means to become a bigger star, or at least a star outside of the wrestling business as inside of the wrestling business. That’s how John Cena became a big star because everywhere you looked, including WWE, but outside of WWE, you would see John Cena. He became that. WWE was preaching outside of the choir. And they connected with people that they weren’t connected with just on the wrestling show by using John Cena because he had that potential and ability to transcend the business in that regard. I think Cody Rhodes has the same potential.”
Elsewhere in the conversation, Bischoff explained that he thinks it will take “two or three” years before the discussion around live events returns to normal.
“Here in the United States, every state has its own laws and recommendations and enforcement thereof. So for example Florida—it is pretty much wide open, and there are events going on in Florida. You’re going to see more and more of that because Florida is taking a very, I’ll call it ‘progressive approach’ to it because of the data over the last 12 months. Based on the strategy that Florida has implemented has been at least as good as some of the states that have taken the more draconian approach to it and locked everything down, shut down everything.”
“Now, that same contrast exists in almost all the states, some are, you know, like-minded, some are not. But I think it’s going to take two to three years before the live event discussion settles down to the point where only a small percentage of people feel uncomfortable. Yeah, I think it’s gonna take three years to get there”
Bischoff also recently appeared on an episode of AEW Dynamite as a member of the wrestling media questioning Chris Jericho and MJF over their recent actions.
H/t to Wrestle Zone for the transcription.
AEW Revolution takes place on March 7th. Viewers outside the United States can watch the pay-per-view via Fite TV.