In an interview with The Ringer shortly after his triumphant WWE return at WrestleMania 38, Cody Rhodes was asked the first person he called after inking a WWE contract few weeks ago.

“Nobody,” Rhodes responded. “The real ones, the OGs knew [I was coming back]. The one guy who had a hard time not being told was Kevin Owens. I was just wanted to keep it quiet, keep it on the low.

“I didn’t even tell Randy [Orton], I haven’t even seen Randy. I heard he’s a really good guy. It blows my mind. This guy threw a dynamite stick in a lobby in Mexico the first week I met him. Now, he’s a family man? What the hell are we doing? I didn’t tell anyone, I kept it very limited. Only Brandi knew, my mom knew, maybe a few others.

“My cousin works here as a timekeeper, and even he didn’t know. It was the best-kept secret in wrestling but I really wanted to keep everything low-key. WrestleMania is the one time you don’t know what’s happening, and won’t know until you see it. Like when Bryan Danielson won the title at WrestleMania 30, you knew he was going to, but had to wait until the end of the night to see it.”

When asked why his WWE comeback match happened against Seth Rollins, Rhodes felt a WrestleMania showdown against Rollins was ordained for years.

“There’s nobody else it could have been,” Cody Rhodes said. “Seth walked into the ring at a live event in Michigan, it was his first match after coming out of FCW. It was against me. Then, in Dayton, Ohio, he had his first dark match on TV against me. The Shield vs. Rhodes Brothers were some special matches that I blocked out of my head for some reason.

“It needed to be him. And here’s why: this isn’t a knock against Seth, but I heard so much about Dusty’s kids at NXT, to the point where: ‘what about his real kids?’ Again, [I’m a] slow learner, maybe it took me a while to walk out there and win his respect, as he earned mine once. But this is a different guy now, he’s been to the top of the mountain. It couldn’t have been anybody else. It had to be him – now that I think about it.”

If you use any of the quotes in this article, please credit The Ringer and provide an h/t to Wrestling Inc. for the transcription

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