Well, before you dismiss the idea, he did purchase the XFL from Vince McMahon. We know full well how passionate Dwayne The Rock Johnson is about football, dear readers. And he’s just as passionate about pro wrestling if you haven’t figured out by his social media posts and the TV show based on his life, Young Rock. At the end of the day, I think it’s very possible.
But what did the man have to say about the possibility, as was reported by BNN Bloomberg (link below)?
“I think the key if there were a sale of the WWE is to make sure that whoever acquires that brand in that property, you’ve got to love the wrestling business. Of course, you can love the asset, and you can love everything that comes with it, but you got to love the professional wrestling business … because if not, then you could kind of see the writing on the wall; four or five years down the road, what will happen? …
(WWE co-CEO) Nick (Khan) and I have talked about that, and we always enjoy that over a bottle of Teremana (Johnson’s tequila brand)…I love the wrestling business. I grew up in it. My grandfather…my dad started here in Canada, (his dad, Rocky Johnson was Canadian-born). So, I’m not quite too sure if a board seat is in my future, but possibly other things are in my future, for sure.”via BNN Bloomberg
The Rock entered the business of pro wrestling after his football career plummeted. He did play with the Calgary Stampeders after an impressive college ball career in Miami. It was in 1996 that he started with WWE, WWF at the time, and essentially took the company by storm…eventually.
He wasn’t favored at the beginning, but it wouldn’t take him all that long to turn heel, as his babyface gimmick wasn’t working at all, and in that time he gained favor with an audience that was particularly interested in heels. It was just a wee bit before the Montreal Screwjob of 1997 that fans started to like individuals like Stone Cold Steve Austin, an evident heel and bad boy….
Dwayne Johnson was paying attention. In the years that followed, Johnson definitely got the fans on board with what he was selling, and they all certainly smelled and liked what he was cooking. By 1999/2000 he was well on his way to becoming a household name, even old mommas in their kitchen were quoting his “do you smell what the rock is cooking?” catchphrase.
And by the time the new millennium got rolling, even Hollywood would have a new star on their hands…one that would eventually take over that industry as well.
Hollywood would take many fans’ favorite wrestler away from the game and for seven long years or so. But in 2011 he would return to essentially pass the torch to John Cena, who had taken over the reins of leading the WWE ship to the promised land, he following in the footsteps of Hogan, Austin and yes, even The Rock, who had all paved the way (among others).
Cena and the Rock would have an epic feud that would span three WrestleMania events…The Rock even faced CM Punk and during this period even had a run with the WWE title one more time…. And these days, the rumor mill is running rampant about him returning just one more time to face his cousin, Roman Reigns, to see just whom is the real ‘Head of the Table’ and not just of WWE, but of the entire Anoa’i/Maivia legacy….
But Dwayne seems intent on making it not only in Hollywood, which he has, and in football. The XFL is scheduled to start in 2023. He also has turned his attention to a sports energy drink company, Zoa, and a tequila company known as Teremana, and both companies are indeed doing well.
His relationship with the McMahon family has always been a good one, as he himself has stated in the narrative of his aforementioned NBC show, Young Rock. McMahon took his leave of the business he built from what his own father Vince Sr. made it, this occurring in July. What did Dwayne have to say about that? “I’ve known Vince for a very, very long time and he’s a businessman…”
Very few words, but in the end, what else could he have said? McMahon did end his run as WWE Chairman in a blaze of controversy, allegations of his using company funds to pay off female employees he had sexual relations with.
In the end, the retirement may just have saved the company he built up even more than it already was…and an industry as well. Perhaps in the end, that’s what Dwayne meant…a businessman will always protect what he’s built.