When Cody Rhodes threw Gunther over the top rope to win the Royal Rumble, fans knew it was just the start of a journey. But no one was quite prepared for the twists and turns that have followed.
On the February 6th episode of Monday Night Raw Cody Rhodes came to the ring to address his WrestleMania 39 match against Roman Reigns. The Royal Rumble winner admitted that his path to the event was a straight line, but acknowledged it’s not that simple for Reigns who will meet Sami Zayn at Elimination Chamber.
After Rhodes wished Zayn well and “may the best man win,” Paul Heyman made his entrance.
Heyman ran through his catchphrases, congratulated Rhodes on his Royal Rumble win, and then things got personal in a hurry.
The American Nightmare said that his brother and father had a nickname for Heyman, but out of respect he would call him “Mr. Heyman.” Rhodes said that he respected Heyman and he knew why, before deciding to pull back the curtain on their past.
Cody Rhodes Pulls Back The Curtain
The former AEW star said that in 2000 the Rhodes family was broke and his father was doing local car commercials — not for the money but to keep the car. As the crowd chanted for Dusty, Rhodes said that his father got a call from Heyman asking if he would appear at an ECW event, if he agreed he would be paid very well.
The star thanked a visibly shaken Heyman for being a man of his word and giving his father his confidence back. Rhodes closed by saying that before returning to WWE he was being a disrupter elsewhere and Heyman showed him the way.
By this point Heyman had been reduced to tears and took a moment to compose himself, joking that Rhodes was good. Adding he had come to the ring to talk business but had been thrown off his game.
Heyman then took the opportunity to pull back the curtain himself. The Special Counsel for Roman Reigns said that this wasn’t about him or Dusty, it is about Cody, and more specifically whether he can rise to the challenge and handle the pressure at WrestleMania.
The former ECW boss pointed out that they were just down the road from the WWE Performance Center where Dusty Rhodes trained and prepared Seth Rollins, Becky Lynch, Bayley, Kevin Owens, and Roman Reigns. But he didn’t train and prepare Cody.
— WWE (@WWE) February 7, 2023
With the crowd hanging on every word, Heyman swung for the fences. He said that he couldn’t stress enough how much he loved Dusty and how much Dusty loved Cody. He said that in his final conversation with the American Dream, the legend told him Cody was his favourite son, but Roman Reigns was the son he always wanted.
As Heyman went to leave Cody got in his face and forcibly shook his hand. Rhodes said that all he was trying to do was win a wrestling championship and everyone keeps making it personal. He closed by saying that Heyman won’t pay for what he just said, instead Roman Reigns will when he takes his titles.