As we previously reported, The New Day’s Xavier Woods admitted that he had heat with Cody Rhodes when the two attended rival high schools in Marietta, Georgia. Given the popularity of Woods’ bowling story, Chris Jericho welcomed both Woods and Rhodes to the Talk Is Jericho podcast to set the record straight. Rhodes gave his side of the bowling alley incident. Despite their longstanding rivalry, Woods admitted that Rhodes contacted him when Woods debuted for TNA. While Woods and Rhodes are able to joke about their high school rivalry now, Rhodes echoed Woods’ prior statement that his parents disliked Rhodes until they got reacquainted at a recent WrestleMania.<
According to Woods, Rhodes beat him by one point in a high school wrestling match. Woods ran into Lindsey Laufersweiler, a girl whom he had a crush on, at a bowling alley and discovered she was there with Rhodes. When she tried to introduce Woods and Rhodes to one another, Rhodes indicated that he knew Woods and bragged about defeating him in their wrestling match months before. Then, Rhodes proceeded to bowl a strike.
Rhodes recalled the situation differently. In Rhodes’ version of the events in question, the bowling alley where the incident occurred was on “the wrong side of the tracks”, near Woods’ Sprayberry High School. Although Rhodes denied Woods’ contention that Rhodes was a jock in high school, Rhodes claimed that Woods and his friend, Tony, were going through a Ruff Ryders phase of their own.
“You could’ve heard a pin drop when these guys walk in because they made such a scene, including this young man right here fully Ruff Rydered out with his ‘A’ chain [for Woods’ real life first name, Austin], smoking a cigarette and flicking it out on the floor as he is walking towards me, so he’s a smoker. He was a smoker in high school, like a casual smoker. So, he approached us, and to this day I cannot tell you exactly what he said to me, but I believe he said something along the lines of, ‘hey, sweet ass’ to Lindsey Laufersweiler, I believe is what he said. Now, full disclosure, that’s kind of my date, so that’s a little off limits. Also, when you, like, wrestle every weekend, as we did, the last thing you want to get into is another wrestling match/fight/anything. You’re pretty much spent. So, he said that, he’s staring at us, and Tony [has] got his foot up with all the bowling balls. I took a ball, I rolled a strike, I looked at him, and there was just this moment between him and I. Lindsey Laufersweiler kissed me on the cheek and said, ‘don’t worry about him, baby’ and that was the end of this tale. He had come there to bully me.” Rhodes continued, “there was no, ‘oh, I beat that kid’. I don’t recall saying that. I just recall a long pause between him and I and just an awkward split between the two and that is where it ended for me.”
Apparently, Woods and Rhodes had no contact again until Woods debuted in TNA.
“Our wall didn’t break down till I got hired here,” Woods recalled. “I think the only contact that we actually had was when I debuted in TNA, I got a text, something along the lines of like, ‘good job – I can’t wait till you work with us’ and I texted him back and no reply.”
Despite being on good terms now, Woods’ parents held a negative view of Rhodes until only recently.
“His parents also, up until maybe a year ago, where under the impression that I was a complete asshole. I thought, ‘oh my gosh, here are his parents at the WrestleMania after party’. I gave them a big hug. We talked for awhile and I walked away.” Rhodes added, “I think it is all clear that I was not a bully. I was not Johnny Lawrence [a character from The Karate Kid film] at all. If in a match setting, I played that role, perhaps. But I didn’t cheat.”
Source: Talk Is Jericho