After six separate stints with the company, it finally appears that Dustin Rhodes aka Goldust has left the company for good. It comes as no surprise that he showed up in his brother's company and signed with AEW soon after leaving. Rhodes spoke to Wrestling Inc. on our WINCLY podcast about how it feels to leave WWE.
"It feels good to be away from WWE and now on my own doing what I wanna do," said Rhodes who will face Cody at Double or Nothing. "I'm looking forward to [Double or Nothing]. I've trained hard for it, my worked butt off and am probably in the best shape I've been in since high school.
"This to me is, in my 31 years in the business, the most important night in my life and I really do mean that. It's that important to me and I'm that excited and that nervous. It's very special to me and I'm looking forward to it."
Rhodes ran into some creative issues in WWE but is glad that those are now in the past. He believes that AEW will have an openness to ideas from talent and will put out a fresher product compared to WWE.
"AEW is gonna open a lot of eyes and shock the world. I think everybody is rushing to up their ratings and entertainment value. Let's face it, the creative team in the other company [WWE]… you pitch so many ideas and nothing ever gets done. They never take your idea seriously and then you have to bypass them and go to the boss [Vince McMahon]," stated Rhodes.
Rhodes discussed going to Vince with ideas and how that would upset the writers who you would get sent back to. Rhodes also said he got the feeling that he wasn't that important to the writers so they never went with his ideas.
"That stuck with me for a long time and I'm sure it stuck with Cody. What he's doing right now is taking on the world and taking on everybody. Everybody's gonna be in his rearview mirror and he's out to prove a point. He's Dusty's son and he's got that knack of entertainment and the smart business savvy sense that Dad had with booking and creating," stated Rhodes before adding that AEW has a great pool of talent and all other promotions should be scared.
Rhodes left WWE in the past to go to rival promotions such as WCW and TNA. This time he says he says he left to have more freedom with his wrestling career.
"I don't want to put anybody down and go into [why I left] because that was the past and I'm not there anymore," said Rhodes. "I asked for my release because I wanted to have freedom. I was going nowhere at that point and when you're not involved in a storyline and you're trying to get involved in a storyline, it's heartbreaking for everybody up there."
Rhodes knows that he's older and now it's about young talent now, but he still has a love for the business so it hurt to see so many people miserable in WWE. The talent is walking on eggshells there and afraid to speak up to Vince McMahon.
"That's got to stop. If something is pitched to you and it's a damn good angle, why are you scared to go take it to the man [Vince McMahon]? That makes no sense to me; he's a man. He might be our boss but all he can do is say 'yes' or 'no.' My frustration was that I didn't get a lot of answers," stated Rhodes.
In regards to his storyline ideas, Rhodes says he was getting strung along and never got clear answers. But he still has a hunger for the business and feels people have enjoyed him over the years.
"As long as I have that hunger, I wanna keep doing it," revealed Rhodes. "Until that hunger leaves me, I'm not gonna stop creating… It doesn't matter what I'm doing. If I'm doing a backstage segment, I'm gonna make it the best backstage segment I can.
"I have some longevity with this character and it's amazing. I look back on it and I'm like, 'Holy sh*t. This thing has really stood the test of time and then some.' The people have come to really adore and love the Goldust character."
Rhodes then talked about how he also loves the acting business and he has passion for that now as well, but his first love is the wrestling business.
"I still have a little bit left in the tank and if this is it for me, then it's gonna be a damn good show," said Rhodes. "That's all I can say about that."
After his WWE release, Rhodes worked the fans on Twitter by telling people to not believe rumors. He said the feedback he saw from fans proved to him that his plan worked.
"Yeah, I did [work them] and people were made at me," stated Rhodes. "But hey, that worked."
Dustin Rhodes will battle his brother Cody Rhodes this Saturday night at AEW's Double or Nothing. It will be available to watch via PPV and B/R Live.
Dustin's full interview was included as part of a recent episode of our WINCLY podcast. The full audio can be heard via the embedded audio player at the bottom of this post. In it Dustin discusses walking away from WWE, WWE talent being scared of Vince McMahon, how personal his match with Cody is, not liking the Rhodes Family vs SHIELD match, AEW's deal with TNT, the AEW team taking shape and more.
You can check out past episodes of the WINCLY here.