Cody Rhodes appeared on The Ringer Wrestling Show following Saturday's WWE WrestleMania 38 Night One where he returned defeating Seth Rollins.
During the interview, Cody talked about getting vindication from Vince McMahon when the two met during WWE’s courtship of him, as well as feeling like it was time to move on from AEW.
“One of the most special parts of it was Bruce (Prichard) and the Chairman himself [Vince McMahon] flew down to meet me. Had that meeting not led to anything, had it just been a conversation about ‘wrestling, sports entertainment, so fun,’ just a conversation on that, it would have been great closure on the last loop. I left here on the worst of terms. I talked all the smack on earth, but none of it mattered. It was just, ‘you went out and did it.’ I remember saying, ‘I have to be me. It has to be Kingdom. It has to be The American Nightmare.’ To hear Vince say, ‘Well, it’s not broke. That’s what we’re buying.’ Just vindication. It felt good. You spend all the time trying to prove the people wrong who doubted you and prove people right who were on board with you. In that moment, it was closure on the first loop and excitement for what’s next. It’s pretty clear what I came to do. Pretty clear. There is unfinished business. For my family, there is something we never got, and I want to be the one to get it.”
“I was 20-years-old, I didn’t know what a contract was. I was 19 when I went to OVW. Now, it’s a different story. It’s not so much about, ‘this has to be this way,’ it was just more of, I was the Executive Vice President of AEW, one of the founding fathers. I wanted to make sure that leaving, it was with the utmost respect and not, I hope no one is lazy enough here, which no one is, to make AEW jokes or bingo hall references or anything like that. Nothing against them, it was just time for me to move on. I had wrestled everybody that I wanted to wrestle. I didn’t want to be a 15-time TNT Champion and hold the belt hostage. I wanted to move on to a different piece of leather.”
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