Cody Rhodes has opened up in a new interview about his role as AEW Executive Vice President and also addressed claims that he’s “buried talent” in the company.
The ‘American Nightmare’ has become firmly embedded in the fabric of AEW after helping form the promotion alongside The Young Bucks and Kenny Omega. Cody Rhodes was heavily featured in the early days of AEW television, challenging for the World Championship before eventually winning the TNT Title.
Rhodes has remained away from the AEW World Championship picture in recent days and has embarked on numerous ventures outside of the ring. Most recently his own scripted reality show alongside his wife Brandi, Rhodes To The Top, debuted on the TNT network.
Speaking with Monsters and Critics Reality, Rhodes opened up about his role as an AEW EVP, explaining that while it’s wonderful that the company signed the likes of CM Punk, it’s also crucial to focus on the next generation of ‘homegrown’ talent.
“Well, that’s technically my number one job at AEW as the Executive Vice President of Talent. That’s the most important thing I already know that Bryan Danielson is famous, I already know that CM Punk is amazing in the ring, that Kenny Omega can have a five-star match, I know that. It’s our job to show you who in five years, or three years, will be leading the charge and if you just look at some of the homegrown types with Ricky Starks, and MJF, and Private Party, and Lee Johnson, I mean, I could go on and on. It’s vastly important,”
Adding on, Rhodes discussed claims that he’s “buried talent” during his time in AEW. The former TNT Champion hit back saying that he’s helped introduce new talent for three years and that’s something he enjoys.
“There’s this online outlook on me [that suggests] that all I do is bury talent. Gosh, I feel like I spent three years introducing talent and I wrestled a pay-per-view against an absolute rookie. That’s the job though. I love that part. Darby is somebody who’s just blowing everyone away. I’m glad people get to see that side of Ricky and I think he will be, too, because Ricky presents himself as so confident and suave. But you can’t forget that Ricky is new into our industry. He showed up for the TNT open challenge. He didn’t win the match, but he won himself a job, and now, TV wrestling is far different than independent wrestling, and seeing Ricky navigate that space and emerge on such a level that he has — I’m very proud of both those guys Darby and Ricky.”
When recalling Ricky Starks’ debut, Rhodes revealed that Arn Anderson instantly had an inclination that the young star was heading for big things.
“Yeah, when he was standing in the ring for the open challenge — so much realness happens on Dynamite that people may not realize, but Arn [Anderson] just whispered in my ear, and he said, ‘He looks better than some of our guys, and he wasn’t wrong. Then the next day, he was one of our guys. You know, Tony [Khan] always has the foresight to see somebody coming and Ricky was undeniable.”
AEW’s EVP’s have been the source of much speculation in recent weeks and months with rumours suggesting somewhat of a falling out backstage.
Meanwhile, a new report revealed that the roles of Cody Rhodes, The Young Bucks and Kenny Omega have shifted within the company. The report notes that AEW President Tony Khan has taken creative power away from the group, adding on that Rhodes has been somewhat removed from the Young Bucks and Omega, leaving him “on the outside looking in.”
H/t to Fightful for the transcription.