The Rock Talks WrestleMania 32 Rumors, Advice He Gave Roman Reigns, More
The following are highlights of a new interview with The Rock:
On being part of the “holy trinity” with Steve Austin and Hulk Hogan, but being the one to thrive in Hollywood: “It’s hard. It’s hard work. That’s the key, but it’s not that those guys don’t work hard. For whatever reason, it just kind of worked out for me. That’s the only answer I can give. I’ve had incredible matches with those guys and I’m good buddies with those guys, especially Austin. I know that they put their heart and soul into everything they do. Think about the matches and the tours I had with Austin. He is probably, if not the greatest of all time. There is a wiring in his head, which is, ‘I’m going out, I’m going to take it, and I’m going to be the best.’ He was my mentor, by the way, back when I was this young buck. With a top guy like Austin or Undertaker, you only get to work with them if they say it’s cool. For Austin to say it’s cool to have The Rock work with him is one thing, but he also wanted me to main event WrestleMania with him. He took me under his wing, taught me a hell of a lot, and I’ll never forget it.”
On Roman Reigns and the reaction he received at the Royal Rumble pay-per-view: “I wasn’t surprised by the reaction at all. That’s the beauty of Philly. I have felt that from Philly on both ends, as a heel and a baby face. Roman was getting booed in every city, and I just knew – we all knew – well, Philly was going to be worse.
“The only advice I gave Roman was that you just need to stay the course. It’s a unique dynamic and relationship that you have with the fans in wrestling. They’re passionate, just like you’re passionate, but they know it’s a work, just like you know it’s a work. It’s this fine balance you have to find between just staying the course and continue to cut your teeth every night by putting in good performances.”
On Vince McMahon and “San Andreas” director Brad Peyton: “This will be the only time that Brad Peyton’s name will ever be mentioned in the same sentence as Vince McMahon. Vince has been a mentor and a father figure to me. I met him when I was eleven years old. Even still today, I appreciate the relationship we have. It’s a real cool father-son dynamic, and especially as I get older, I can appreciate the relationship today better than when I was a punk 25-year-old kid. But here is the connective tissue between Brad Peyton and Vince McMahon – they come to work every single day like it’s their first day on the job and they will outwork every single person in the building. Vince’s work ethic at 70, or however old he is, is just crazy. He’s squatting 500 pounds at one o’clock in the morning. Not that Brad Peyton is squatting 500 pounds, but they both want to excel, raise the bar, and go beyond expectations.”
On possibly facing Triple H at WrestleMania 32: “Myself, Vince, Triple H have talked about creating something that is amazing. Any time for me, going back into the WWE, especially if it’s a match – and these guys know this because of the open dialogue between me and Triple H – the question is, can we create, in terms of a promotional scale for the fans, something better than what we did in Miami and back-to-back in New York with John Cena? Can we put together something that’s different but equally, if not more, exciting? So there’s a lot of elements involved that we continue to talk about and chop up. That’s the coolest part about the relationship I have with the McMahons, including Triple H.
“Look, the platform is there. You have Dallas and could set an attendance record, so that’s the first goal. And then what is the match that allows us to do that? I’ve had incredible matches with Triple H, so I’m not ruling it out, but I’m not saying it is going to happen. We continue to talk about it, and we’re still shooting each other text messages. He sent me a message from Dallas that said, ‘This could be us. The record is ours.’ So we’ll see.”
Check out the complete interview at SI.com.
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