Cody Rhodes is preparing for the biggest match of his career. At WrestleMania 39 he challenges Roman Reigns for the Undisputed WWE Universal Championship.
Rhodes booked his ticket to Hollywood by winning the Royal Rumble and declare his burning desire to become the first Rhodes to win the WWE Championship.
Since returning to the company at last year’s supershow event, the American Nightmare has been on a tremendous run. But it wasn’t always the case. Back in June of 2011, during his first tenure with WWE, Rhodes was part of what he calls the worst match of his career.
The match in question was a six-man tag team bout between Rhodes, Ted DiBiase Jr and Wade Barrett vs Daniel Bryan, Ezekiel Jackson and Sin Cara on SmackDown.
The match is infamous for a botch, which, as the story goes, saw DiBiase mess up and forget to kick out of a pinfall attempt before blaming the referee for trying to screw him.
Rhodes was a guest on HOT 106 and recalled the disastrous match and what went down on that notorious night in hilarious detail.
“There is a legendary wrestler, now he’s a producer, [Vice President], writer, Michael Hayes. He was in charge of whatever I was doing that night, I believe it was a three-segment tag match. I don’t know if it was being young, arrogant, or braggart. He asked me what we were going to do out there and I legitimately snorted pre-workout to be funny. I don’t know what I was thinking. It was a very strong pre-workout. I did it and I told him, ‘it doesn’t matter what we do out there, we’re going to tear the roof off this place.’ Famous last words. Then disaster struck.
In the first segment of the three segments. One guy got kicked below the waist twice. That was Bad News Barrett. Tried real hard to get back to where we were, got kicked below again. The next thing you know, Daniel Bryan hits a dropkick in the corner and Ted DiBiase Jr gets pinned. Doesn’t get up. That’s in one segment.
Two segments (not filled) on television that we’re supposed to do something, there was a lot of frustration. I rolled to the outside realizing this was probably the worst match in history [of the arena]. Rolled to the outside, tried to salvage it, told the guy next to me, ‘We should go in there and jump him. Let’s jump him.’ By the time I finished saying that, he was so angry, I turned to look back and he was already marching to the back, Bad News Barrett, furious over this terrible segment. Okay, we’re not jumping.
I walk to the back, there’s Vince (McMahon) standing up, headset off, you know you’re in trouble. Ted thought he kicked out, he looked at him and before Vince could yell at us, he said, ‘Where is that referee? He was trying to [fuck] on us.’ The way he worded it, everyone was staring at him.
There is no justice in this, the referee, Rod Zapata, he’s still with WWE, great referee. Vince called him over, ‘Hey ref, you were totally out of position.’ He’s validating Ted. He said, ‘I know sir, but on covers that face the hard camera, I can’t block the hard cam.’ Vince put the headset back on, ‘Yeah, you’re right,’ sat back down, Ted was stewing, Wade is punching a wall, I told Michael we were going to tear the roof off, Michael is shaking his head.
The worst part of it all, in the worst match I ever had in the history of my time at WWE, the worst part of it all, we thought they would edit it a little bit. I watched it all happen back. It’s like somebody in the office said, ‘Just let these young guys know they suck. They’re not tearing the roof off.’ I made up for it when I came back for Backlash, last time I was here, I had a great match with Seth Rollins.”
Can Cody Rhodes finally dethrone Roman Reigns at WrestleMania?
The Tribal Chief Roman Reigns has a seemingly unbreakable grip over the WWE Championship. After defeating the Fiend and Braun Strowman for the Universal title at Payback in 2020, Reigns is unbeaten. He has successfully defended the title against everyone who stood in his. Legendary Superstars such as John Cena, Daniel Bryan, and Seth Rollins.
At WrestleMania 38, Reigns vanquished his greatest-ever opponent, the Beast Brock Lesnar. The victory saw him unify the Universal and World Championships to become the Undisputed Champion a title he has held for over 300 days.
Now, the American Nightmare with the full support of the fans takes on the Head of the Table in one of the biggest WrestleMania main event matches in history.
WrestleMania 39 takes place over two days on April 1st and 2nd at SoFi Stadium in Los Angles, California.