AEW Executive Vice President and inaugural TNT Champion Cody Rhodes made a return appearance on The Rich Eisen Show where the two caught up on their lives and how AEW has grown since the last time they spoke on the show. Cody talked about the experience of working under a pandemic. He also praised last weekend's Double or Nothing pay-per-view.
"This has been such an honor and a challenge to do with a large-scale production. Our largest asset as a wrestler, especially as a good guy wrestler is the crowd. So now we have no crowds, and we can't get crowds during this pandemic obviously," Cody said. "Every room you walk into you've got to be tested and temperature scanned, but all of that aside, we were able to put on this really just magical PPV.
"I think most of our wrestlers and I was pretty proud of the roster, they tuned into the box that is the hard-cam, and they really addressed the viewer sitting at home, the father-son, the family because we don't have our instant feedback, the pops, the boos [and] the cheers of a live crowd. This PPV, this past weekend, the sequel to Double or Nothing show was just gangbusters. Every match very diverse, buffet of styles [and] having Iron Mike Tyson there for the TNT title, it was just lovely."
Cody noted how his expectations for AEW have been far surpassed so far, and he also praised AEW President Tony Khan for his work during this time under a pandemic. Cody had previously said that Dynamite was the best show in the "empty arena era".
"It's been genuinely bigger than I anticipated. I knew the audience was there for it and a hunger was there, but the production and the scope of it and the success of it on Wednesday nights with Dynamite and and how it's doing opposed by WWE. That's such a beautiful competition showcasing how many wrestling fans there are," Cody said. "I think since the last time we spoke I really stepped outside the political aspects of it and really just leaned into the things that I can control, the specific talent that I managed solely and help work with them on their interviews in their segments and then my own personal stuff.
"Tony, especially in this pandemic era wrestling, Tony has proven to be such a significantly smart wrestling owner and matchmaker. I mean a true just matchmaker. We've had to do a lot of taped content, so the patchwork he put together throughout the pandemic was amazing. It made my job a lot easier."
If you use any quotes from this article, please credit The Rich Eisen Show with a h/t to Wrestling Inc. for the transcription.