MR. TITO: Told Ya So! Cody Rhodes Losing at WWE Wrestlemania 39 Was the RIGHT Decision

Literally seconds after the Cody Rhodes vs. Roman Reigns match at Wrestlemania 39, we instantly heard complaints from impatient wrestling fans of “WWE just buried Cody”, “Cody won’t recover from this”, “this was Cody’s time and WWE blew it”, etc. Then, when I DARED to suggest that Cody was NOT ready, as he had too much “AEW Stench” still on him, all of you attacked me. Furthermore, many were actually attacking the WWE for keeping the title on “Part-Time Roman”, as if having a World Champion who didn’t defend the title weekly was a bad thing.

What if I gave you the following 2 scenarios, and from these scenarios, which person would appear more credible to become a WWE World Champion?

(1) Midcarder in the WWE previously, came from an All Elite Wrestling promotion that struggled to draw 1 million on a TNT household base of 80 million or so available households. Prior to winning the 2023 Royal Rumble, he has a few good wins over Seth Rollins only.

(2) After winning the Royal Rumble, he comes inches away at giving Roman Reigns his first singles pinfall loss in over 3-4 years and only loss due to the cheap interference by Solo Sikoa. The next night on RAW, he’s brutally attacked by Brock Lesnar and then overcomes this bully by not only defeating him in 2 out of 3 matches (cleanly on both wins, I might add), but has Brock Lesnar shaking his hand and saluting him to the SummerSlam 2023 audience.

Which would you pick?!? Scenario #1 or #2?

If you said #1, you are an IMPATIENT wrestling mark who doesn’t understand the business. Period, end of story.

Had Cody won at Wrestlemania 39, the Bloodline storyline goes away. Thus, all of this epic storyline drama that has been seriously pushing Smackdown to earn nearly 3 millions viewers DURING THE SUMMER would have gone away. Instead, Roman is still the World Champion and the schism is that he’s champ and the Usos are not, which helped bolster the SummerSlam 2023 Main Event that we just all enjoyed.

Who would have Cody wrestled after Wrestlemania 39 that would have excited you? Maybe Brock Lesnar, but it’s at a different point of view. Instead of Cody chasing and overcoming this bully, he’s just defending a title. Then what? Wrestle Drew McIntyre? Seth Rollins again? Maybe Kevin Owens? Yeah, that Main Event WWE bench is incredibly thin right now with the WWE Developmental system not having anyone ready in the hopper, either. If WWE would have signed Kenny Omega, hypothetically, Omega vs. Cody wouldn’t have been new or exciting.

INSTEAD, we got more greatness with the Bloodline storyline AND we’ve made a BETTER Cody Rhodes. That “AEW Stench” has been scrubbed harder off of him and he’s stronger NOW than he was prior to Wrestlemania 39. Again, he had Roman beat and he has 2 out of 3 wins over Brock Lesnar and Lesnar tortured him for the past 4 months to make those 2 wins really feel like he has overcome something. Cody’s MAIN EVENT-level resume was THIN before Wrestlemania 39 but is much stronger following SummerSlam 2023. He is now ready to convincingly become World Champion and hopefully taking the title from Roman (with due respect to Seth Rollins, his title isn’t the real world title).

This is why YOU are wrestling fans and why Vince McMahon is the promoter. His older age forgets more about wrestling in a day than you have known for your entire life.

It’s much easier to suggest Creative ideas from a couch or computer desk, compared to being backstage at an actual WWE live event where wrestlers have to actually go out and executive your suggested creative ideas.

All of you were attacking the WWE for not crowning Cody champion at Wrestlemania 39, and even some ex-WWE wrestlers and Hall of Famers were jumping on that bandwagon, too. That’s why YOU are not on the WWE Creative Team.

If you’re soooooooooooooo smart at creative ideas, join a local Independent promotion and offer your creative services. For one night, try convincing grown men that you know what is best for them, their characters, their promos, and their matches. Also try to put together a wrestling card that not only draws in people, but convinces them to want to return and spend more of their hard earned money.

Isn’t if funny how we NEVER and I repeat NEVER hear of any story of wrestling fans rising through the ranks and becoming a successful Independent booker? You would think with so many people commenting online, one would actually try it? Or maybe they have and failed immediately.

And certainly, I am critical of WWE Creative and do so with my opinionated columns here at NoDQ (and Lords of Pain previously). But I give them credit where it is deserved, such as praising the Wrestlemania 39 match between Cody and Roman while the rest of you were ignorantly crapping on it. I’ve been praising WWE’s handling of the Bloodline storyline, while prior to that, always loving how Brock Lesnar has been pushed. If your criticisms are 100% negative and never providing any deserved praise, then why are you watching something that you appear to hate?

It is HARD to manage people and get them to execute a great idea. Something that sounds great on paper doesn’t always translate into something that works in action. Things are lost in communication, the talent of a person is sometimes over-estimated, or the presentation is just off. Then, you have the wrestling business where guys have to do physical things in front of a rabid audience.

We’re seeing the same IMPATIENT nonsense with LA Knight, which I addressed on my July 19th column that everybody has since used my ideas for their own. Y’all went NUCLEAR on the WWE for not letting him win the Money in the Bank briefcase, and even hijacked poor Kevin Nash’s comments to vent your frustrations at him for your impatience on WWE’s creative decisions. Yet, you have NO IDEA how the wrestling business works. Isn’t it funny how LA Knight’s merchandise sales go through the roof and that’s what has begun the LA Knight push? The Battle Royal is the beginning of his big push that’s coming…

Yet, all of you wanted him to win the TRASH Money in the Bank briefcase which has NOT benefitted anyone in over 15 years. That’s a FACT! That briefcase sucks, especially with how everyone cheaply cashes in after a champion just clawed through defending their title. Trust me on this one, Iyo Sky will NOT be a top drawing Women’s Champion because she didn’t go through the struggle, the chase, the disappointments, and connections with the fanbase to earn a title shot. Nope, she just defeated a badly injured Bianca Belair who just wrestled like 30 minutes.

The REAL path to becoming a top WWE Champion is to WIN the Royal Rumble. Cody Rhodes did that during 2022, and maybe that was premature? However, he lost the big title match and has had to continue the climb to regain another shot. Compare that to Alberto Del Rio during 2011. He won the 2011 Royal Rumble, but came up short at Wrestlemania. Which is perfectly fine, WRESTLERS ARE ALLOWED TO F’N LOSE MATCHES… Just “pick yourself up and try again”. Instead, he was flipped to the RAW brand, wins the 2011 Money in the Bank briefcase, and cheaply wins the WWE Title at SummerSlam 2011. How did that work out for him again? Oh yeah, dropped the title by Survivor Series 2011.

Think about this 2022-2024 WWE resume for Cody Rhodes before Wrestlemania 40, assuming Cody headlining that event with Roman is still the plan:

(1) Convincing wins over Seth Rollins, including with a torn muscle injury.
(2) 2023 Royal Rumble winner
(3) Lost to Roman Reigns at Wrestlemania 39 due to cheap interference
(4) Defeated Brock Lesnar by winning 2 out of 3 matches
(5) 2024 Royal Rumble winner

That looks DAMN good, and much better than just having #1 and #2 on the resume before last year’s Wrestlemania 39.

LEARN YOUR LESSONS, folks, over trying to overpush Cody Rhodes but getting egg all over your face instead. Right now, you have a rising talent with LA Knight… LEARN FROM YOUR MISTAKES on being sooooo wrong about Cody’s creative that it doesn’t cause you to repeat yourself on wanting LA Knight to be instantly overpushed.

Sigh… Look at all of the GREATS… They had to endure the climb, the disappointments, many match losses, and many changes before becoming World Champion.

– Hulk Hogan bounced from promotions and had several name changes before getting a very lucky break by appearing in Rocky 3. Took him 6 years to become WWE Champion.

– Macho Man Randy Savage grinded through the territories for 12 years before he joined the WWE and went after the Intercontinental Title first before winning his first WWE title. Took him 15 years to become World Champion.

– Bret “The Hitman” Hart worked for 8 years in Stampede for his dad before joining the WWE. Then, he worked for years in the Tag Team division and then in the Intercontinental Title division. 16 years later, he became World Champion.

– Shawn Michaels took a similar path through Tag Team and Intercontinental Title glory, and he even failed to win the WWE Title at a Wrestlemania before winning his first World Title. That Wrestlemania 11 loss didn’t derail him from winning at Wrestlemania 12. Took him 12 years to become World Champion.

– “Stone Cold” Steve Austin had to climb through the ranks of BOTH WCW and WWE, via their midcard titles (TV Title, US Title, IC Title) and tag team division before making it big in the WWE. And hell, he had a very lucky break with a change of gimmick, doing the Austin 3:16 gimmick, and Shawn “losing his smile” to get a real chance at the top. Took him 9 years to become World Champion, WHAT?!?

– The Rock and Kurt Angle are absolute freaks of nature, but did you know that they were drawing as midcard champions before becoming World Champions?

– Brock Lesnar is also a freak of nature, but nobody else in the business is like him.

– John Cena and Batista both grinded through the midcard, provided that they could draw as midcard champions, and both overcame a real challenge at the World Title position (Triple H & JBL in their way). WWE GREW during 2005 by making these 2 guys new stars through Wrestlemania 25.

– I’d argue Edge was a worthy world champion because he held ever midcard title known to man, while also being in many, many Match of the Year candidates. Yes, he was the first to cash in the Money in the Bank briefcase cheaply, but it was a new idea and his World Title reign was deserved.

THIS is what many wrestling fans are missing… There is a PROCESS to being elevated to the very top of a wrestling promotion.

If you push the wrong guy or push them too early, they will FAIL… Miz, Jack Swagger, Alberto Del Rio, Jinder Mahal, Kofi Kingston, and others that I’m probably forgetting.

Roman Reigns was still too green when they began his babyface push during 2014. He just didn’t understand the psychology of a match and was too reliant on high impact spots for his matches. His personality didn’t match being a John Cena clone, either, as he just wasn’t convincing when reading the WWE’s scripted lines. From 2014 through early 2020, it was a struggle watching his promos and his matches. Roman has wins over the Undertaker, Randy Orton, John Cena, CM Punk, Daniel Bryan, AJ Styles, and many others but nothing was sniffing “Match of the Year”, let alone match-of-the-night. That said, Vince McMahon saw something in the guy that many others didn’t and by the time August 2020 rolled around, the heel turn worked and Vince was proven right for selecting Roman as the heir-apparent to John Cena. Roman is better NOW because he endured years of experience of trial and error in the ring.

Cody Rhodes was last seen in the WWE, before 2022, as Stardust and could only achieve the Tag Titles or Intercontinental Title through the mid 2010s. Sure, he’s had success in New Japan, Ring of Honor, and elsewhere, but the AEW run wasn’t all that impressive following his Double or Nothing 2019 bout with Dustin. Many of the bad creative ideas from 2019-2022 in AEW were his and his character just wasn’t presented well there. Sure, the Wrestlemania 38 return was exciting, but that doesn’t erase the AEW STENCH… Having a tough loss to Roman at Wrestlemania and earning the respect of Brock Lesnar does.

Cody is ready to become WWE Champion.

For LA Knight, have patience… The time is now for Cody Rhodes to possibly win the Royal Rumble. Don’t attack the WWE for completing their push of Cody because you’re too impatient with LA Knight.

Remember, LA Knight was embarrassed at Royal Rumble 2023 in his awful match against Bray Wyatt along with selling an Uncle Howdy splash that clearly missed him. Before that, he was a manager to an awful Modeling table. LOTS of damage to undo, as LA Knight has “Bad Creative Stench” on him. As good as Vince McMahon is, he can whiff too and was reportedly against Mick Foley and Steve Austin’s climbs to the top at first. Vince probably smelled LA Knight’s “Impact Stench” while also wondering why a guy in his late 30s is joining the main WWE roster. As I mentioned in my July 19th column, there’s lots of building blocks still needed to maximize LA Knight’s impact on becoming the next babyface star.


Gotta be patient, folks… You’re loyal and going to watch anyway, so why not be patient? You don’t have to Tweet (or “X”) about everything you freakin’ see.

Just look at what the WWE just did to Cody Rhodes… Close loss to Roman thanks to interference and 2 clean wins over Brock Lesnar. Roman and Brock are the BIGGEST active stars in pro wrestling today and both gave him the “stamp of approval”. Now, Cody can become and even bigger star than what he could have achieved at Wrestlemania 39.

WWE Creative and Vince McMahon are smarter than you think… Sometimes, they just don’t have the right moment or the talent capable of pulling off a great idea or push.

But the door is wide open for YOU, online wrestling fans, to try your hand at booking wrestling shows and NOT on your Playstation, Xbox, or Nintendo Switch. Work through the ranks of helping Independent shows, start growing a fanbase of your promotion, and then use that on your resume to the WWE. Simple as that… Being a Keyboard Creative Director won’t help matters if you keep watching the wrestling shows that you appear to hate.

WWE just did a GREAT job in building up Cody Rhodes, and scrubbing off most of that “AEW Stench”. Why not praise that online, wrestling fans, while openly admitting to eating some major humble pie?

Please be patient with LA Knight or the same egg on your face from your Cody opinions will occur again with Mr. Knight. And I’ll be laughing at you when I’m right, once again. Told ya so!


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