After three months of build-up, hype, and more media interviews than most wrestlers do in a lifetime, Cody Rhodes entered WrestleMania 39 with a world to gain; with three quick taps to the mat, Rhodes could become the new WWE Universal Champion, #CompleteTheStory, and do what his father never could: become the WWE Champion.
Walking to the ring with an entrance fit for a king, Rhodes hugged his daughter, gave his belt to Brodie Lee Jr., and prepared for the fight of his life against “The Tribal Chief,” Roman Reigns. Sure, it’s been nearly four years since Reigns was pinned, and he’s rapidly approaching 1,000 days with the Universal Championship, but after slaying every opponent who got in his way for literally years, it looked like the perfect man for the job had finally come around; a man who could send WWE into the new era it’s sorely been needing for years now.
Fighting in a main event for the ages, Rhodes and Reigns depleted their respective chambers with every move in their repetiteurs but in the end, the match didn’t come down to who had the better counter, submission, or finisher, but instead who was in either man’s proverbial corner, as after watching Solo Sikoa get kicked out of ringside earlier in the event, The Usos and the Undisputed WWE Universal Tag Team Champions, Kevin Owens and Sami Zayn, cleaned out the ring and kept things even… for a time. That’s right, just when it looked like Rhodes was going to secure the win, Sikoa returned to the ring once more and took “The American Nightmare” out. Despite his best efforts, Rhodes run ended like so many men before him, looking up at the lights as the 1-2-3 was tapped by the referee before sitting in the WrestleMania ring for a good 10 minutes wondering what just happened.
Will someone eventually best “The Tribal Chief?” Presumably so, but unfortunately, it wasn’t Cody.
— WWE (@WWE) April 3, 2023
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