Cody Rhodes Talks AEW Being Alternative to WWE, UFC Fighters Potentially Joining

Mike Chiari@mikechiariFeatured ColumnistJanuary 19, 2019

LOS ANGELES, CALIFORNIA - JANUARY 17: Brandi Rhodes (L) and Cody Rhodes attend Mortal Kombat 11: The Reveal on January 17, 2019 in Los Angeles, California. (Photo by Tasia Wells/Getty Images for Warner Bros. Interactive Entertainment)
Tasia Wells/Getty Images

Cody Rhodes spoke Thursday about his hopes for All Elite Wrestling and the possibility of bringing some crossover stars into the company.

When asked about potentially surpassing WWE in an interview with TMZ Sports on Saturday, Rhodes shifted the focus toward a different goal:

"I think we're just trying to be an alternative and lean into the people who supported us last year, and do it all again," Rhodes said.

Rhodes, who is an executive vice president for AEW along with Matt and Nick Jackson of The Young Bucks, was referencing the All In pay-per-view the trio spearheaded, which was widely praised last year.

AEW already has an impressive talent roster that includes the likes of Chris Jericho and PAC (formerly Neville in WWE), but Rhodes acknowledged that it needs to be beefed up in the coming weeks and months.

With regard to potentially bringing in some UFC fighters who already have mainstream name recognition, Rhodes seemed receptive, but he also stressed the importance of signing talent who love the wrestling business: "That's one of my big knocks ... you can't teach passion. ... So, as long as it's somebody who's passionate about [wrestling] and knows it's kind of a hard gig ... I could imagine that would be a cool little crossover."

It has been proved in recent years that MMA stars are capable of moving into the professional wrestling world and enjoying success.

The most obvious example is Raw women's champion Ronda Rousey, but NXT stars Shayna Baszler and Matt Riddle have also gone from the Octagon to the squared circle seamlessly.

If Rhodes can find some MMA fighters with a similar love for the wrestling business, it could go a long way toward adding a unique flavor to the AEW roster and make it even more appealing to a wide range of wrestling fans.

                      

Listen to Ring Rust Radio for all of the hot wrestling topics. Catch the latest episode in the player below (warning: some language NSFW).

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