The Rock Teases WRESTLEMANIA 41 Plans And Reflects On Stepping Back Into The Ring At This Year's Show Of Shows

The Rock Teases WRESTLEMANIA 41 Plans And Reflects On Stepping Back Into The Ring At This Year's Show Of Shows

Dwayne "The Rock" Johnson has looked back at the pressure that came with stepping back into the ring at this year's WrestleMania and teases "the biggest match of all time" at WrestleMania 41. Check it out!

By JoshWilding - Jun 15, 2024 05:06 AM EST
Filed Under: WWE
Source: ESPN

Dwayne "The Rock" Johnson has made a handful of "returns" to WWE over the years, but typically for one-off appearances.

In fact, before this year's WrestleMania, the last time he'd had a match was a six-second squash in 2016. However, his last proper match was way back in 2013 for a bout with John Cena, with that and their previous clash in 2012 resulting in Johnson suffering multiple injuries. 

ESPN has spoken with the Final Boss about his 2024 WWE run and learned when exactly everything clicked into place for him. 

"In pro wrestling, there is no take two, you get one night, one shot and one opportunity," he explained. "Leading up into WrestleMania, the training camp, the pressure, the expectation, the deliverable, everything, that quote kept coming back to my mind, which was, 'I just want to go the distance' and going the distance meant I knew that we had almost an hour planned, which as you know, is a long f***ing time."

"I also had something to prove to myself. It's always you vs. you. So that's something to prove to myself that I can do it and put in the work and put in the training camp and rely on my dance partners in the ring in Cody and Seth and Roman as we all relied on each other. But yeah, I just want to go the distance."

"My very first lockup with Seth Rollins, that's when it all clicked," Johnson admitted. "It's like you have a shift-and-click moment. It's riding the bicycle. Then he tagged in Cody. First time ever, I locked up with Cody and the lockup feels good."

"The moment you lock up with somebody in our world of pro wrestling, you immediately know what kind of wrestler they are, if they're going to be stiff, if they're going to be smooth, if they're going to be intense, if they're going to be in control. Both guys smooth, in control."

"That's probably at about the 5-to-10-minute mark," he continued. "I knew my conditioning was under control, and I remember saying to myself out there with him, 'We can go an hour tonight. I'm ready to go.'"

The Rock's return didn't go exactly as planned as the original idea was for him to challenge real-life cousin Roman Reigns for the Undisputed WWE Universal Championship. Fans wholly rejected the idea, forcing Johnson to turn heel and giving Cody Rhodes the chance to finish his story as planned.

Addressing that, The Rock said, "The pressure of pivoting on a storyline that had been brewing for two years quietly and privately...We always knew we had the mega match with Roman and I in our back pocket."

"We're on the 1-yard line to create the biggest WrestleMania of all time and the biggest match of all time at WrestleMania 41 in Las Vegas," he noted, suggesting the match will no happen next year. "I'll just leave it at that, Final Boss style..."

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