Cody Rhodes made his highly anticipated WWE return by winning the very thing that eluded his late father, Dusty Rhodes. On January 28th, The American Nightmare officially booked his ticket to the main event of WrestleMania 39 by emerging victorious in the 2023 Men’s WWE Royal Rumble contest. WWE’s premium live event in the Alamodome kicked off with the 30-Man Royal Rumble match. WWE Intercontinental Champion GUNTHER entered the match at #1 while Sheamus stood across him in the ring as the second entrant. After all 30 participants had entered the match, it was Rhodes who walked away with the victory, earning a shot at Roman Reigns’ WWE Universal Championship at WrestleMania 39.

Click here for our complete coverage of WWE 2023 Royal Rumble

Cody Rhodes made his return from injury by entering the Men’s Royal Rumble match at #30. The former AEW Executive Vice President immediately locked horns with Seth Rollins. The two even worked together to eliminate multiple opponents before the returning Logan Paul eliminated The Revolutionary.

Cody Rhodes eliminated Logan Paul before fixing his aim on GUNTHER. After a short battle, The American Nightmare eliminated The Ring General with a clothesline to cement himself as the winner of the 36th annual Royal Rumble showdown.


As the first entrant, GUNTHER became the ultimate Iron Man. The Austrian wrestler made history by lasting longer than any Superstar in the history of the Royal Rumble. He tied Cody Rhodes for most eliminations in the match (five) and spent 71 minutes in the ring.

As Cody Rhodes was celebrating his career-defining victory, he did a shout-out to The Young Bucks by throwing the too-sweet hand gesture in the air. The American Nightmare then performed Kenny Omega’s trademark gun gesture before pointing to the WrestleMania sign.

The Young Bucks took to Twitter to address Cody Rhodes’ shout-out from the Royal Rumble. Matt and Nick Jackson reacted to the special moment in their Twitter bio. They didn’t say anything outright, but those two emojis they picked certainly sent the message home.

After the Royal Rumble event, Cody Rhodes talked about this gesture, and he said he wanted to make things special. It certainly was a special moment. You can check out the photos below to see what we’re talking about.

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Saptarshi Sinha

Saptarshi Sinha is a pro-wrestling enthusiast and journalist. He has been covering the industry for over five years, providing in-depth analysis and coverage of the latest events and storylines. In addition to his passion for wrestling, Saptarshi also enjoys perfumery, photography, optometry, and gaming in his free time. He is dedicated to bringing his readers the most accurate and engaging content in the world of professional wrestling.

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