Show: Wrestling Epicenter
Guest: Cody Rhodes
Date: 11/15/19
Your Host: James Walsh

Cody took part in AEW's media call today. We were there. Here's the video. Highlights are below. Hope you like Coronavirus briefings. This was a tad too much of a subject this media call around.



– Cody discussed the mindset going into Double or Nothing 2. He said self-awareness is very important and said a year ago, they didn’t know what AEW would look like, but now it’s becoming more clear. He said the mindset is to continue to make AEW destination programming, acknowledging that it’s tougher to do with no live crowd reacting to things. He praised AEW’s diverse content, noting how many different types of matches are set for Double or Nothing.

– Cody talked about the precautions AEW is taking with their shows right now, such as getting temperatures taken when entering the building, the COVID-19 testing, etc. He praised the AEW medical team. He said creatively, he’s enjoyed the challenge of creating content without live feedback, noting that social media and TV ratings allow them to get some level of quick feedback. He said many of the talent is going to come out of this experience as better wrestlers because of the experience of working with no crowd.

– Cody said the TNT Champion will not be part of the AEW Rankings since the champion will be listed as a champion. He said that the belt will grow and have an identity of its own so he can’t say it will be a mid-card title.

– He put over AEW’s growing heavyweights, such as Brodie Lee, Wardlow, Luchasaurus, Lance Archer, etc.

– Cody said Daily’s Place is a special venue for them and put over how the location has a lot of tools to work with that give them things to play with, and put over the open air aspect of it. He said a lot of places want AEW right now but Daily’s Place has been great for them.

– He said the plan right now for AEW is to stay in one spot rather than move around so that the talent doesn’t have to travel. He hopes things open up and fans will be allowed back soon but for now, he thinks the safest decision is to stay in one place in Jacksonville.

– Cody said one accomplishment he’s really proud of is the AEW action figures. He also said he was really proud of the AEW shows they did in QT Marshall’s wrestling school, noting how many younger talents were involved in those shows.

– Cody talked about one thing that may last after the pandemic ends and things go back to some level of normal is that handshaking may not be as prevalent backstage as it was. He also said that AEW is now more prepared for crisis management.

– Cody said that if someone in the company tests positive for COVID-19, the person would be quarantined from everybody else, noting that the tests are not done at the show, they are done in quarantine and nobody is in proximity to others when they are tested. He said nobody has tested positive as of now. He said if someone did test positive, it would not shut down production.

– Cody said the advantage of shows with no crowd is that you are tested as a performer, but other than that, there haven’t been any positives and that they really miss the fans. He said wrestling depends on a crowd.

– Cody said that Mike Tyson was at Double or Nothing last year but that the deal to have him at the show this year was one of the last touches made to the show.

– Cody said there has been talk of showing the TNT Title belt before Saturday night, but that he likes the idea of it been revealed for the first time at the show.

– Cody listed MJF, Jungle Boy, Sammy Guevara, Shida, Darby Allin, and Wardlow as future breakout main eventers. He said it’s his job to make sure the talent in the mid-card has the opportunity to move up.

– Cody talked about the things they have tried in the empty arena shows that haven’t worked, noting that some fans have asked why mics are needed with no crowds, saying they are needed for the cameras and technical reasons to ensure clear audio. He also talked about the success of having the wrestlers form the audience so that there isn’t total silence.

– Cody said AEW will make it to Rochester, NY and that show will for sure happen.

– Cody said Matt Hardy is wonderful but that he is not an official member of the Elite yet, and that the only official members are the OGs, which remains Matt and Nick Jackson and Kenny Omega. He said there is then the expanded universe Elite which includes Hangman Page and Marty Scurll, saying Matt is now in a “trial by fire” for the Elite.