Dustin Rhodes has announced that he’s planning to retire as a professional wrestler in 2023.
As we sit here in the last month of 2022, 53-year-old Dustin Rhodes publicly announced that he plans to end his wrestling career after an incredible 35-year run in the business. Rhodes made the announcement at the Blizzard Brawl event on Saturday, December 3rd for Great Lakes Championship Wrestling.
Rhodes currently works for AEW as a wrestler that is featured on a part-time basis, he also has played a key role in developing talent and coaching as well.
As the son of the legendary NWA World Heavyweight Champion and WWE Hall of Famer Dusty Rhodes, Dustin earned the nickname of “The Natural” after starting as a wrestler in 1988 when he was just 19 years old. Dustin became well-known on an international level in WCW, but his big break came as Goldust in WWE.
In 1995, Vince McMahon pitched the Goldust character to Dustin Rhodes, who recently talked about how he thought that the gimmick was a rib (a joke) at first.
“A lot of people say, hey, you know, Vince ribbing dad by putting the polka dots on him? And I had that in the back of my head too, is he ribbing me for this? But at that point it was like, you know, I had been trying to follow in my dad’s footsteps for so long. And it was like it’s not working man, I gotta get [over], I have to do something else and we had a falling out which was the worst thing, worst decision of my life ever.”
Dustin would go on to say that he thought it was his way of stepping into his own shoes and doing his own thing.
“I just look at it as me stepping into my own shoes and trying to do something on my own and did it and it worked and got over and you know, went through a lot of transitions and different characters, switch ups and changes. When he (Vince McMahon) took away the over-the-line stuff because it was pretty harsh towards the end of it or like around 1998/1999, he started pulling it back a little bit.”
While Dustin’s WWE run had a lot of twists and turns due to various alcohol and drug issues leading to stints in rehab, he did have a lot of success. Dustin was a three-time Intercontinental Champion and had three Tag Team Title runs, including two with his brother Cody while his father Dusty was right there by their side.
— Premier Streaming Network (@WatchOnPremier) December 4, 2022
During AEW’s first year in 2019, Dustin had an incredible, bloody match with his brother Cody at Double or Nothing 2019 that many people may think of as the best match in Dustin’s career. Dustin was 50 years old at the time of that. Since then, Dustin has wrestled some of the biggest names in the company and showed that he was as good as ever in the ring.
The last high-profile match he’s had on AEW television was on the August 26 edition of Rampage when he lost to Claudio Castagnoli in a Ring of Honor World Championship match.
It is unknown when exactly Dustin will retire, but as he said at that GLCW event, 2023 is likely going to be the end of his career as an active professional wrestler.