Cody Rhodes Reveals Why He Left AEW
Cody Rhodes on why he left AEW following his WWE return
After six years away, Cody Rhodes returned to WWE at WrestleMania 38, being unveiled as Seth Rollins' mystery opponent.
The American Nightmare had previously been an All Elite Wrestling Executive Vice President, founding the promotion in January 2019 with Tony Khan, The Young Bucks, Kenny Omega, and his wife Brandi Rhodes.
He and Brandi departed in February 2022, though, after they were unable to agree to terms on a deal. Reports noted creative control and his salary as reasons for Cody's departure but Rhodes revealed "it was just time" while speaking to Variety.
"I chose to remain silent about my departure from AEW and I'm going to keep my word on that. There's no shoot interview. There's no nefarious tale that's going to be told. There were all these different theories and none of them are correct. I mean, there were things about money and creative control. They were printed as fact and it's been a very difficult two months to see that, when the reality is it was just time," Cody began.
"It was a personal matter and we couldn't move past it. I have nothing but respect for Matt [Jackson], Nick [Jackson] and Kenny [Omega]. I'm rooting for Tony Khan. His name is going to be in the history books as someone who helped to bankroll and support this entire alternative and revolution that AEW became but for me, it was just time to move on. I get an opportunity at my dream, I get another chance at it. And you really can't leave any stone unturned with that."
While he wouldn't say it out loud, Variety noted it is Cody's dream to win the WWE Championship, accomplishing what his father Dusty Rhodes never could.
During his first run with WWE from 2006 until 2016, Cody became a two-time Intercontinental Champion and six-time WWE Tag Team Champion.