The eminent contender of the global integrated entertainment hub "WWE," Cody Rhodes, officially returned to WWE earlier this year, and the wrestling aficionados have gone gaga over this massive declaration!

Having left WWE for AEW, Cody Rhodes' return to his "home" has attracted much respect from other WWE stars and fans. Cody, the son of the legendary Dusty Rhodes, had big shoes to fill, following in his father's footsteps. The 37-year-old professional wrestler left WWE in 2016 to pursue a career in the independent wrestling circuit, which turned out to be the cherry on top of his wrestling career. After leaving his primary place of work, he dabbled in Ring of Honor (ROH) and New Japan before All Elite. Afterward, his time with AEW was a watershed moment in his career, and Rhodes became an icon due to what he has accomplished since then.

Rhodes is known to be morphed from "The Dashing Rhodes" to "Stardust" later. The indestructible force of WWE, The Undertaker, also recalled Cody trying to figure out who he was when he first arrived in the WWE. In the words of The Deadman, "Cody is his own man now, and he believes in himself. I don't think he did the first time through. Sometimes it takes going away to someplace else, and his time away served him well." Six years later, Cody Rhodes made the long-awaited WWE comeback on the first day of Wrestlemania 38 Weekend, less than two months after quitting AEW. Let's learn in detail how magnificently Rhodes shone when he made a comeback to the WWE arena earlier this year and his recent shoulder injury.

The Glorious Comeback of Cody Rhodes To WWE

In April 2022, Rhodes, 37, returned to WWE at Wrestlemania 38, bringing a massive moment nearly surpassing the first “Stone Cold” Steve Austin’s match since WrestleMania 19. The crowd went wild when Rhodes was revealed as Seth Rollins’ mystery opponent. The story leading to the match was equally impressive. To illustrate, Seth had been waiting in the ring for an opponent to show up when the American Nightmare theme song played, and Cody emerged on the stage. The Stardust is the first AEW star to return to WWE after quitting.

Rhodes embarked on 2022 without an AEW contract, despite being an executive vice president and the reigning TNT Champion. Rhodes and his wife Brandi Rhodes announced their departure from AEW in February, sparking speculation about his return to WWE. Cody and Brandi were AEW’s founding members and served as wrestlers and executives for the organization. For AEW, Rhodes was a three-time TNT champion. 

The Story Of A Torn Pec Surgery And Recovery Process 

In June 2022, Rhodes suffered a grave injury during a brawl with Rollins while fighting him on a Monday Night RAW episode. WWE declared that Rhodes later aggravated his injury during weight training, completely tearing the muscle. Cody’s left side was bruised entirely, and the muscle had pulled away from the bone; nevertheless, WWE allegedly allowed Cody Rhodes to wrestle Seth Rollins at Hell in a Cell because his injury was so severe that it would do any more harm or affect the recovery. 


When he removed his attire, the right side of his chest was full of ground blood. Rhodes pushed through the pain and took serious bumps and hits during the match. But, what it's worth, Rhodes bagged the victory in the match. Following the game, his pectoral tendon was completely torn off the bone, and on June 10, he underwent successful surgery. Rhodes is currently recovering from his injury post-surgery. Talking about such injuries, the former WWE stars typically return in four to six months. However, WWE has provided a nine-month timeframe for Rhode's return, though that is likely an in-storyline estimate given Rollin's attack.

The Voyage Between Different Wrestling Hubs

Rhodes remains one of the most influential wrestlers of his generation. If anyone thought he’d play it safe with WWE, his first feud after his return proved he’ll continue to give us unforgettable moments and that the industry is a better place because of him. Moreover, Cody is still a young man, but his in-ring ability truly distinguishes him. Cody has dramatically improved his in-ring work since his debut in 2007 by studying industry legends and applying old-school approaches to his matches. He began his WWE career with Hardcore Holly.

Cody Rhodes has been a vital member of the AEW roster since the company’s inception nearly three years ago. However, with the recent talent additions, many of the AEW originals have forgotten or lost importance on the roster. Despite this, Cody Rhodes has maintained a prominent position on AEW television, which can be attributed to his on-screen persona’s intrigue. Cody Rhodes was a fan favorite when AEW Dynamite first debuted. They recognized him as one of the executive vice presidents of this new wrestling company, as well as a great pro wrestler with experience in the WWE, Ring of Honor, and NJPW.


Over time, Cody excelled on the microphone and inside the ring, as his promos drew people into emotionally investing him as a character in the pursuit of the AEW Championship. For the first months of Dynamite, he feuded with Chris Jericho for the world title before losing it and vowing never to rechallenge it. Similarly, he faced an epic feud with MJF (Maxwell T. Friedman) in late 2019/early 2020 when he was temporarily aligned with MJF in All Elite Wrestling. Following that loss with Jericho and a feud with MJF, Cody Rhodes’ popularity began to wane, and his interests outside of wrestling appeared to take precedence. Eventually, Rhodes became a host on TBS’s Go Big Show and launched a reality show about his life. However, working with ROH and AEW has honed him, reaching heights he could never have achieved while covered in stardust.

The Hallmarks Of The American Nightmare

Commonly, the contenders in WWE carve their signature identities. May it be anything; the tag line they chant, the entry mode, the appearance, or whatnot, it is something that defines them and excites the audiences. Rhodes himself went through several alterations throughout his fighting career.

Rhodes wore a protective mask as part of his “disfigured” gimmick. While several people made a remark saying it made him look effeminate, Rhodes took the support of a mask as protection. He was concerned about being hit in the face and needed the cover to compete in his matches.


The next iconic hallmark is the enormous tattoo of Cody Rhodes on the left side of his neck, which is a tattoo of a skull-like image in American flag colors. Rhodes engraved it in 2020 and received a lot of flak as his tattoo became a hot topic over the next few weeks. Moreover, this particular topic earned him the title “The American Nightmare.” When Jerry Lawler, a Hall of Famer, noticed Cody’s tattoo, he had something to say: "Cody Rhodes comes across as a cheap car salesman,” Lawler stated.

Another trademark Rhodes set was dying his hair. The man went blonde and stated that it was a reference that, unfortunately, not everyone understood. Rhodes said, “Blondes have more fun, and when I dyed my hair black, no one got it. It was a play on Death of Superman; he had the mullet, a change, a different outfit- nobody got it.”

Rhodes, A Legacy In The Wrestling World

Cody began the WWE journey in 2006 after amassing a two-time Georgia state champion as an amateur wrestler. Following the footsteps of his father and older brother, Rhodes was initially assigned to the company's developmental territory Ohio Valley Wrestling (OVW). He is an excellent wrestler, trained by his father, Dusty Rhodes. “The American Nightmare” is a tribute to his father’s legacy.


His father was known as “The American Dream” and was a professional wrestler, booker, and trainer. Dusty was not flashy; he represented the commoner and fought on behalf of the people. He often looked scarred and bruised; nevertheless, he was as quick as a hiccup. He used to get the job done without appearing to be much, and people adored him for it. His rivalry with Ric Flair was partly legendary as it was class warfare. Cody may never level up with his father; each man must sculpt his distinct path- but he never forgets to pay homage to his father.

The professional wrestler began working in the business at a young age and is capable of putting on a great show. Since his early days, Rhodes has possessed an excellent combination of size, speed, and strength. One could throw Cody Rhodes in the ring with anyone, and he’d put on a good show. Given the right promotion talent, Rhodes is an excellent upper mid-card/main event. His only shortcoming ever noticed is his lack of commanding in the ring, and even though he has improved his mic skills, they are not stellar. Well, that does not make much difference as he was excellent while he was a part of WWE, and now with a comeback, the world believes he shall show a much better side of his.