Cody Rhodes Says AEW Is Interested in Only 'Five Percent' of WWE's Roster
Ever since All Elite Wrestling was first announced as a promotion in January, wrestling fans across the Internet have speculated over which former and current WWE Superstars could find themselves on the AEW roster in the near future. But according to Cody Rhodes, that number of wrestlers they're looking at from Vince McMahon's company isn't very high.
Rhodes explained on a recent episode of The Jim Ross Report that he and the other AEW higher-ups are only interested in about 5% of WWE's current roster.
"Having that equity with WWE is wonderful, but like I have been talking, you have to be able to cut it and meet the standard that people have into their bell-to-bell contest," Rhodes said. "That number may increase, being that this opportunity that exists for the boys and girls to make more money, whether here [AEW] or there [WWE], for the boys and girls to have options. That number may increase.
"If they can play, they are going to play, but right now the recruitment was more about...I use the term 'Tier 1.' It was more about freshness, if that makes sense," he added. "I want to build a new class of guys. I have been there before where nobody has my back, nobody is my ally, and I don't want to get into sour grapes over it but I know that it is one of the things that I look forward to the most once we really get into the schedule is the fact that these fresh faces...take Darby Allin for example who was just announced. I don't want them to feel like they were set up and that was it. I want them to feel that they were set up to win and set up to succeed and then they went out there and hit it out of the park."
Current AEW stars who previously were in WWE include Rhodes, Chris Jericho, Dustin Rhodes (aka Goldust), Pac (Neville), Trent Beretta, Leva Bates ("Blue Pants" in NXT) and Brandi Rhodes. WWE Hall of Famer Jim Ross will serve as the company's play-by-play announcer and senior advisor, Justin Roberts will be the promotion's ring announcer, and Billy Gunn will serve as a backstage producer.
AEW's first event, Double or Nothing, will take place on May 25 at the MGM Grand Garden Arena in Las Vegas, Nevada.