Cody Rhodes: The Right Choice To Main Event WrestleMania 39 Against Roman Reigns

Cody Rhodes

Taking a closer look at why Cody Rhodes is absolutely the right choice to main event WrestleMania 39.

We are officially on the Road to WrestleMania. It is the best time of the year to be a WWE fan. This year is especially unique because it feels like, for the first time in years, WWE doesn’t really need to rely on part-time legends of the past to sell the show of shows to the average viewer.

WWE is in a rare position they haven’t been in for a while where they have two incredibly hot babyfaces right now in Sami Zayn and Cody Rhodes. Of course, during the Attitude Era, we had The “Stone Cold” Steve Austin and then The Rock, who were equally over as babyfaces for several years. You also had John Cena and CM Punk and by the time Punk left, John Cena and Daniel Bryan as two hot babyfaces. It really hasn’t been since Cena and Bryan that you’ve had two guys as hot and as over as Sami Zayn and Cody Rhodes.

Cody Rhodes was the returning prodigal son at last year’s WrestleMania. The crowd at AT&T Stadium erupted when Cody returned to face Seth Rollins. Since that night, the popularity of The American Nightmare has not wavered as a lot of people thought it would. Instead, it has grown. The injury to his pectoral muscle in June and subsequent rehab played a huge role in that. Raw was missing a certain edge during his absence. Raw feels refreshed now that he is back. Most people expected Cody to win the Royal Rumble, but it was still surreal to see that happen considering just one year prior, he was defending the AEW TNT Championship against Sammy Guevara. It was a well-deserved win and a fresh match up for Roman Reigns in Hollywood.

sami zayn roman reigns wwe royal rumble chair

The Bloodline story has launched Sami Zayn into another stratosphere as far as popularity with the WWE audience. It started out as a small role that eventually grew to be one of WWE’s best stories in years. Sami had befriended every member of the Bloodline to the point where “Sami” chants were taking over Roman Reigns promos every week. “The Honorary Uce” was masterful storytelling from top to bottom with very few holes and in the process, made everybody involved from Sami to Kevin Owens to The Usos and Solo Sikoa bigger stars because of their work in this story. That’s very rare when you have an angle like that where you essentially make five guys in one story. That speaks to the work of all involved including the WWE Undisputed Universal Champion Roman Reigns.

The question that has been on everyone’s minds is, however, has this Bloodline story launched Sami so high that WWE needs to call an audible for the main event of WrestleMania 39?

We saw it back in 2014 when the WWE audience wouldn’t settle for a Batista vs. Randy Orton main event and let their voices be heard until Daniel Bryan was inserted and eventually became the WWE World Heavyweight Champion. We saw it again in 2019 when Kofi Kingston took what was originally supposed to just be a fill-in role for Mustafa Ali and rode the wave of Kofi-Mania all the way to defeating Daniel Bryan (ironically) for the WWE Championship.

So, are we in for another “movement” the way we saw in 2014 and 2019? The answer is Yes…..and No. We are in for another movement that catapults somebody to another level. However, I don’t think it should lead to a WrestleMania WWE Championship match.

There is one main difference between the movements for Daniel Bryan and Kofi Kingston and the one currently for Sami Zayn. The fans rallied behind Bryan and Kingston because they knew that without the Title match, they likely did not have another path to WrestleMania. Bryan had been screwed left and right and wasn’t really factored into a high-profile match. Kofi had been grinding for 11 years and never really given a shot to run with the ball.

Sami Zayn has another path. As much as the story with Roman has been entertaining, the story with Sami has been mainly with one Jey Uso. That’s the conflict that was brewing since the beginning. Jey finally came to accept Sami into The Bloodline and Sami repays that by choosing his best friend Kevin Owens over The Bloodline. Jey has been MIA since then but one has to figure he will show up by Elimination Chamber. I know he’s booked for a Tag Title match this week, but I would not be surprised if Solo ends up taking Jey’s place in that match.

jey uso roman reigns royal rumble

At Elimination Chamber when Roman Reigns defends the Undisputed WWE Universal Championship against Sami Zayn, I expect Jey Uso to screw Sami Zayn against Roman Reigns in Montreal.

At that point, I expect the heat to shift from Roman to the Usos, paving the way for Kevin Owens to return and save his best friend. That sets the stage for The Usos defending their World Tag Team Championships against Kevin Owens and Sami Zayn is a potential top 3 match at WrestleMania. That is why I do not believe Sami Zayn needs to be in the WWE Title match because, for Sami, his motivations have never been about the WWE Title. Kevin’s motivations have been to take down The Bloodline for two years. Now he finally gets his chance. This story is the best WWE has done in over a decade but it is one that does not need to end with Sami Zayn being the WWE Undisputed Universal Champion.

The story of Cody Rhodes is a much different one. Ever since he returned to WWE from AEW, he has made his intentions clear. He wants to be WWE Champion. It’s the title that his father, Dusty Rhodes, never won in his career. The story of Cody and his return has been essential to the WWE World Championship since day one. Cody winning the Royal Rumble punched his ticket to the main event. It is a marquee match between the current biggest star in the business against perhaps the biggest babyface in the business in Cody Rhodes.

Anybody who watched the promo exchange between Paul Heyman and Cody Rhodes on Raw can see why it was the right decision to put Cody in the main event of WrestleMania.

Cody Rhodes Paul Heyman

I have thought since the day he came back at WrestleMania 38 that Cody should be the one to finally dethrone Roman Reigns. It’s a perfect story. The prodigal son returning home to capture the championship that his father never got. It also has the obvious Bloodline history. The Rhodes Dynasty and The Bloodline. Two wrestling families rich in history.

Cody Rhodes can be the face of the WWE for the next 5-10 years if he wanted to stay around that long. He’s one of the best wrestlers in the world as far as telling a story in the ring. His merchandise is flying off the shelves faster than they can restock it. Sure, Cody was booked as a top star in AEW but this WWE run is what he always envisioned for himself before he left in 2016. Now, he has a chance to accomplish that in Hollywood in the biggest WrestleMania of all time.

This is why I don’t subscribe to the fans revolting narrative. I believe fans are just as invested in the issue between Sami Zayn and Jey Uso as they are in Sami Zayn and Roman Reigns. So, when Jey finally turns on Sami, those fans will be just as happy if the reuniting Sami and KO dethrone The Usos for the World Tag Team Championships.

wwe wrestlemania 39 roman reigns cody rhodes

That leaves Cody Rhodes to do what no man has done in three-plus years. Pin Roman Reigns’ shoulders to the mat. I would’ve liked to see The Rock and Roman Reigns square off but I’m even more invested in the story of Cody Rhodes finally achieving his destiny in the main event.

It would be Cody finishing his father’s story and his story while writing a new chapter. It’s fitting that this WrestleMania takes place in Hollywood because I don’t think Hollywood writers could write a better script.


Thanks for reading. Check out my TJRWrestling writing archive here. I’m on Twitter @GiftedMoney talking about wrestling among other things, so feel free to message me on there with any thoughts or comments. Until next time.