The TNT Championship tournament final is set as Cody Rhodes will wrestle Lance Archer at Double or Nothing on May 23. Cody sat down with Tony Schiavone to discuss motivation and preparation to win the 15th title of his career on his path to becoming the greatest.
Cody began with the positives of earning his ticket to the final. He was proud to be selected as a participant. Cody revealed that this title was an idea from TNT, so winning would be an honor.
The negative to the final is that Archer stands in his way of a championship lifestyle. Cody is okay with being the underdog. He learned a lot by watching Archer defeat his brother, Dustin Rhodes. Cody is hoping to take advantage of what Archer was shown so far.
Schiavone pressed Cody about needing the TNT Championship and what motivates him after achieving so much in the wrestling industry already. Cody has to live up to the lofty standards of being a second generation wrestler, and specifically the son of Dusty Rhodes. That drives him with a desire to be the greatest. Cody is also concerned about caring for two specific people.
“I don’t do this to be anything other than the greatest, anything other than the absolute best. That sounds ridiculous, but I really still believe in dreams. And you get better every day. Every day since I started, which is really 15 years old. Since I started, I’ve tried to be a better wrestler the next day.
So, I’m going to be 35 in June. And I said I’m only going to do this until I’m 40 years old. I don’t know if that’s accurate. It’s rarely ever in wrestling. But, that’s what I said.
I want to make sure two people in particular never have to work a day in their life. That’s my wife, who will choose to work everyday because that’s who she is, and my mother, who refuses to acknowledge that I’m still trying to everything I can to take care of her. You know her. But I want to make sure they know I did it, and I did it with wrestling.”
Schiavone turned the conversation to Cody’s match against Joey Janela on the upcoming Dynamite. Janela is a completely different style than Archer and someone that can push Cody. Cody aims to use that match to sharpen his skills to be at a peak level against Archer. The only way to do that is to wrestle. Wrestling gets you ready for wrestling.
That was an excellent sitdown interview treating professional wrestling like an actual sport. Cody perfectly blended the lines of truthful reality and storytelling with lots of interesting nuggets in their conversation. I genuinely believe that Cody aims to be the best ever. With only five years left, he won’t be passing names like Ric Flair and Hulk Hogan. However, becoming the best is a possible goal and legitimate talking point within the AEW universe. By putting over the importance of the TNT Championship, that shows how it would elevate his career resume by winning. It also helps shed the stigma of the TNT Championship being a mid-card prop.
Cody also had a short Q&A on Twitter. Cody is under no illusions that Archer will be an easy fight. He’s counting on coach Arn Anderson for a gameplan.
AA will have a plan— Cody (@CodyRhodes) May 3, 2020
(Obviously expect to get hit. He’s smashmouth. Gonna’ require an extra serving of grit for sure) https://t.co/tCmfVBz5nS
Cody still plans to stick to his word about not competing for the AEW World Championship.
While not ever winning the AEW World Championship would be a big hole on Cody’s career resume, it is a smart move that Cody continually denies he will ever challenge for AEW’s top prize. It shows he has honor by not going back on that stipulation. It also prevents spoiling any story surprises if Cody were to somehow finagle his way back into title contention.
For all you lovers of authority figures in wrestling, Cody has some bad news.
Hopefully never. The audience isn’t dumb, they know who management is. Authority elements seem insulting in this era. This is just my opinion, as there’s a lot of fun ways to do this and I respect those. https://t.co/XqCdOcnqW8— Cody (@CodyRhodes) May 3, 2020
What are your takeaways from Cody Rhodes’ conversation with Tony Schiavone? What does Cody have to do to become the greatest within the next five years?