Cody Rhodes “Bummed Out” By CM Punk & Young Bucks Brawl
Cody Rhodes has discussed the infamous backstage fight at AEW All Out and opened up about his own relationship with CM Punk and The Young Bucks.
At All Out in 2022, CM Punk captured the AEW World Championship and The Elite trio of Kenny Omega and The Young Bucks became the inaugural Trios Champions – and then all hell broke loose.
At the post-show media scrum, CM Punk laid bare his soul as his anger and frustration boiled over and he openly took shots at the likes of Hangman Adam Page, former friend Colt Cabana, and The Bucks themselves. Afterward, The Bucks are alleged to have confronted Punk in his locker room and a fight broke out with all participants, including Kenny Omega, suspended by the company.
The Elite have since returned following an internal investigation with Punk still on the shelf due to an injury suffered in his All Out match and his future looking increasingly uncertain.
Speaking to Ariel Helwani on The MMA Hour, Cody Rhodes – who at the time was still an AEW Executive Vice President – discussed the incident and began by explaining how one of his wrestling school students found themselves involved in the fight:
“One of my students from the Nightmare Factory was involved in pulling apart whatever the scuffle was. And I told him, he’s got a job as a driver there. And I told him ‘Well, I feel terrible, I didn’t prepare you. We taught you how to do hip tosses, and do an interview, we didn’t teach you how to break up a backstage brawl.’
“So now when we do these beginners’ camps I always wanna be like ‘So guys, if you see two guys fighting immediately separate them’ just because he had that experience. I thought that was, that always popped me.”
Cody Rhodes then explained that his phone had blown up overnight and he was initially worried that someone had taken a shot at himself or his wife, Brandi Rhodes:
“Well, I woke up the next morning and I had, no joke, I think I had 63 messages. So I was very worried that something was said about me or Brandi, and I want to make sure like… I did everything I could. I gave a lot, and I have great memories with AEW. I do. So I hope it’s respected mutually, right?
“So I was worried, I was like ‘I hope somebody didn’t take a weird shot, something like that. And that wasn’t the case, it was about this press conference and all that.”
The subject of Cody Rhodes’ relationship with his fellow EVPs had been the cause for much speculation towards the end of Rhodes’ run in the company, but The American Nightmare says despite the relationship being “tested” they’re bonded forever and he also spoke of having a positive relationship with Punk:
“I had a great relationship with Matt, Nick, and Kenny. Still do. It definitely was tested by being young executives. It was tested by having different opinions on wrestling, but our different opinions is what made it strong. That’s what made us work. I want to Crockett and old school, and they want to do PWG and west coast and damn, I loved it. I liked that, that contention is what made us bond. We’re bonded forever because of the things we did.
“I also had a great relationship with Punk. He was my dinner buddy, you know? They’d order dinner for me at AEW every week as one of my management perks or whatever. I don’t think he knew, I think I always just put it on my tab because I wanted to make sure he was getting something too, salmon or sushi.
“So we didn’t talk a lot, but I had a great relationship. We’d still like chat and I was so excited to have him back, and gosh, even like…If you remember when he came back, everyone was fired up about that. Everybody.
“So when I watched it, just from my sitting there, I was not… there were some people texting me, I remember somebody texting me ‘Man, you’re the smartest guy in the room,’ and I wanted to write back like, ‘F you, man.’ I don’t feel that way. I feel this thing we built got damaged, and I’m not putting any blame on anybody. Sorry, I’m super Switzerland in this moment.
“I’m not putting any blame on anybody, but I just hated seeing that, because as the company grows, and I hope it continues to grow, I hope people remember the mission in the first place, why we were there. And if you bring in people who don’t know the mission, then things like that can happen. And I’m not saying he didn’t know the mission or anything of that nature, but I was just bummed out. That’s how I felt, I was bummed out.”