“The American Nightmare” may be one step closer to being seen on TNT as Cody Rhodes.
As initially reported by Heelbynature.com it seems that the WWE has released their hold on the trademark of “Cody Rhodes”. Rhodes, currently the TNT champion and Executive Vice President of rival promotion AEW previously worked for the WWE from 2006 until he left in 2016 due to creative differences over his character at that time.
The initial trademark was filed in 2009 as a standard 10-year hold which expired in 2019. At the time of expiration, the United States Government gives trademark holders 6 months to either renew or withdraw interest in trademarks that they hold. That six-month period has now expired. Meaning that Cody is now free to apply for the trademark himself, unimpeded.
Rhodes has shown interest in getting the trademark back from his former employers in the past but was met with resistance when he offered to pay for the rights to his family name. Even going so far as to file a trademark for it through the patent office himself, which was then denied because of the active trademark held by the WWE. He had no hard feelings though.
Cody said on Twitter:
"“It’s not as sultry/scandalous as reported. It’s just business. They’ve seen the same data we have, and they know they can make big money off the brand(even though it’s not in their house). Trying to license me is flattering, but it doesn’t stop this train from moving. No grudge.”"
What does this mean for AEW?
As for how this may affect the Wednesday night product that we have become accustomed to on TNT. The truth is it shouldn’t affect it much. At the end of the day, a name is just that. A name. Cody has proven since he left WWE in 2016 that he is as a performer, so much bigger than his family name. He has built a following that has crossed from one promotion to another even going across the ocean to New Japan Pro Wrestling all on the back of four letters. Cody.
The only thing that may change in any significant way is Cody’s own demeanor. You have to remember Cody and his brother Dustin are both currently performing on TNT as members of the AEW roster. Cody’s father “The American Dream” Dusty Rhodes. Preformed on TNT as a member of World Championship Wrestling through the ’90s as a part of the Monday Night Wars.
Even though his father passed several years ago. That has got to be a proud moment in his career. Appearing, on a program that no one thought would ever be possible again. With his family name. His legacy and all the weight that comes with it. Propelling him forward.