WRESTLEMANIA XL: Cody Rhodes vs. Roman Reigns Showdown Becomes Official

The WWE Universe has its official main event for WrestleMania XL. It will be Cody Rhodes vs. Roman Reigns in a title rematch!
WrestleMania XL Cody Rhodes vs Roman Reigns II banner

The WWE Universe has its official main event for WrestleMania XL. WWE announced the news during today’s WrestleMania XL Kickoff at the T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas, Nevada. While it looked like Roman Reigns was about to switch opponents to his own cousin, former WWE Champion Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson, Cody Rhodes interrupted the festivities, choosing none other than the WWE Undisputed Universal Champion Roman Reigns as his WrestleMania opponent.

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However, things only grew more intense and heated from there. The Rock got into Cody’s face, and he didn’t care what Cody had to say about Roman Reigns his family, since that The Rock’s family as well. During the press conference, Cody said Reigns’ grandfather, Elder Reverend Amituana’i Anoa’i, and The Rock’s grandfather, The High Chief Peter Maivia, would be ashamed of Reigns if they were still alive today. That did not sit well with The Rock who slapped Cody in the face.

A huge brawl almost broke out between the competitors, including Seth Rollins, who was there to see if Cody would pick him as his opponent, during the event. Backstage, The Rock and Reigns then confronted WWE Chief Creative Officer Triple H, who demanded Triple H to “fix” this. You can see a video of the press conference and the chaos as it erupted below:


So it looks like this press conference has now seen a bit of a shift. The Rock has seemingly aligned with his cousin, Roman Reigns now, and they’ve gone against Cody Rhodes. The Rock and Reigns were walking together and appeared to be acting amicably after the press conference, and The Rock was not happy with Cody.

Wrestlemania XL kickoff
Image via WWE

So was this a pivot by WWE after the negative fan reaction from Friday Night SmackDown? During last week’s show, Cody said he would not face Roman Reigns at WrestleMania XL. So, what changed, if anything? Either way, The Rock appears to have leaned into the boos and negative fan reaction, turning heel and aligning with The Bloodline, Reigns, and Paul Heyman.

Earlier in the day, The Rock appeared on The Pat McAfee Show on ESPN. The Rock stated that he is training for an in-ring return at WrestleMania XL. Considering it looked like Reigns might be facing The Rock at WrestleMania at one point, it’s still not clear if that’s coming to pass or what role The Rock will play at all.

With the matchup, Rhodes looks to gain retribution after he lost to Reigns in the main event of WrestleMania 39: Night 2 at SoFi Stadium last year in Inglewood, California. Rhodes nearly had the match won, but interference from Solo Sikoa in the main event cost Cody the victory.

Since Cody returned to WWE, his goal has been to “finish the story,” and earn the WWE Championship currently held by Reigns. This is the major world title that his father, late WWE Hall of Famer Dusty Rhodes, never won. Cody won the men’s Rumble match at the WWE Royal Rumble last month to earn this title opportunity at WrestleMania.

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Well, for now at least, fans of the WWE Universe have their main event. It’s Cody Rhodes vs. Roman Reigns II. WWE’s WrestleMania XL, aka WrestleMania 40, will be held at Lincoln Financial Field on April 6-7 in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. The premium live event will be streamed live on Peacock.

About WrestleMania XL

WrestleMania XL Cody Rhodes vs Roman Reigns II

When: April 6-7, 2024
Where: Lincoln Financial Field (One Lincoln Financial Field Way, Philadelphia, PA 19148)
Pricing: Tickets available now at Ticketmaster
Broadcast Distribution: Peacock
About: WrestleMania returns to Philadelphia for the first time in 25 years and the very first time at Lincoln Financial Field on April 6th and 7th, 2024 for this 2-day event! Witness your favorite Superstars from Monday Night RAW and Friday Night SmackDown as they take the stage at the showcase of the immortals!

What do you think of the news? Are you excited about WrestleMania XL? Do you think WWE made the right choice for the main event? Was this fair to The Rock? Are you pumped for WrestleMania Season? Let us know your thoughts about the news on The Illuminerdi’s social media.


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Jeff Harris

Jeffrey is an entertainment journalist and podcast host based in Los Angeles. He graduated from the University of Texas at Austin with a Bachelor of Science in Radio, TV, & Film and a Bachelor of Arts in Theater. Jeffrey is also a Staff Writer at where he writes about movies, TV, games, wrestling, interviews talent, and covers special events such as Anime Expo, Comic-Con, and CinemaCon. When Jeffrey is not binging his favorite seasonal anime or show, he enjoys playing dodge ball, gaming, watching films, and enjoying UT football. You can find him on Twitter @Wheeljack83.