When Cody Rhodes said he would defend the TNT Championship in a weekly open challenge, he truly meant open to the world. On the Dynamite pre-show hosted by Alex Abrahantes, Cody dropped a hint that tonight’s surprise challenger for the TNT Championship comes from outside AEW.
Cody: I’ll give you a hint for those igniting the Dynamite, as Alex put it. I’m trying to think if this is a fair enough hint: Texas independent star. I think that’s a good hint. That’s a hint for those watching. I think people will be excited. The open challenge is indeed open.
Abrahantes asked about defending the TNT belt against wrestlers not on the AEW roster, so Cody went into a little more detail.
Cody: Another hint. I will say there’s a lot of hoops to jump through when you’re on a major network, America’s greatest network, and you’re bringing in people from the outside. But, I’m fine jumping through those hoops. The rankings really truly affect the World title chase more than they do the TNT Championship, as far as we’re seeing it shake out now. I want the challenge to be open and that means it’s open to other places, other companies, other areas in our world, in our wrestling world. Tonight, that sets the tone for somebody outside AEW.
To keep with consistent storytelling, Cody tweeted that Arn Anderson has hand-picked tonight’s opponent.
Obviously excited about this!— Cody (@CodyRhodes) June 17, 2020
(AA scouted and hand-picked tonight’s opponent) @TheArnShow
Got to keep going. #DoTheWork https://t.co/5WAChG8eKX
Arn had mentioned in the fallout to Dynamite last week that the timing was wrong to wrestle Jake Hager at Fyter Fest. We’ll see if Arn picked someone legit or went the route of a ham-and-egger.
As for guesses of the mystery opponent, I’m picking Texas boy Tim Storm. He is currently signed with the NWA and held the Worlds Heavyweight Championship for 414 days before losing the belt to Nick Aldis. Storm works a more bruising style than the typical AEW flippy stuff. He would be a very worthy challenger.
Cody has worked with NWA in the past when he won the main title from Aldis at All In in 2018 then dropped it back to Aldis 50 days later at the NWA 70th Anniversary Show.
Who do you think will by Cody’s opponent tonight? Who would you like to see drop by in the future to challenge for the TNT Championship?