Cody Rhodes and Paul Heyman cut off a masterful promo this week Monday Night Raw as part of the build up to Rhodes to challenge Roman Reigns for the Undisputed WWE Universal Championship on Wrestle Mania 39. Rhodes was quick to bring up Heyman’s history with the Rhodes family, and how he played a vital role in helping the family financially and emotionally when they had run into financial difficulties at the turn of the century. Here’s a closer look at what happened.
After leaving WCW again, Rhodes was contacted by Heyman to appear on ECW’s Guilty as charged pay-per-view on January 8, 2000, and confront then-ECW World Champion Steve Corino, which resulted in him hitting the champion with a pair of bionic elbows. By the end of the month, he was back in the ring, teaming with Tommy Dreamer to defeat Corino and Raven on an episode of ECW on TNN.
That ended up being his first of seven games in the promotion, including defeating Corino in a Texas Bullrope Match at Alive dangerous 2000 and lose at Cyber slam 2000 in Philadelphia. His last game was over ECW Hardcore TV on May 20, 2000, defeating Jack Victory in another Bullrope Match. The company would host its last show less than a year later, while Rhodes would launch his own promotion, Turnbuckle Championship Wrestling, in July 2000.
Cody has previously mentioned in interviews how Rhodes’s return to the WWE in the mid-2000s and sales of the WWE-produced DVD of “The American Dream’s” greatest matches and moments helped get the family back on their feet . “The American Nightmare” would begin his professional wrestling journey by training with Ohio Valley Wrestling in 2006 and would debut on WWE television the following year.
In the final years before his tragic passing, Dusty helped train the next generation of WWE stars at the WWE Performance Center. That included “The Tribal Chief” Roman Reigns, who explained in 2020 that Dusty helped him rediscover his current personality in promo classes.
“That’s what I imagined a long time ago, and it took a really nice route to get here,” Reigns said. After the bell back in 2020. “It’s still hard for me to brag, but that’s what I love about what I’m doing now, if I don’t want to,” Paul [Heyman], tell them. Tell them what I am. Remind them who I am, read that CV quickly.’
“That’s a nice thing about adding a layer, being able to play someone off,” he continued. “But there’s no question, I’m just doing what I set out to do in NXT, back at FCW.”
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