Dwayne Johnson vs. John Cena remains one of the most monumentally epic rivalries to ever go down in the history of WWE, both within and outside the ring. But as with all great epics, even this clash of the titans has an iconic legend to go with the tale of the Wrestlemania showdown that has been solidified up there among the greatest battles fought live in the ring. As electrifying as the build-up and the eventual beat-down were, the genesis of the story of love and hate between The Rock and John Cena is known to only a bare few.
Also read: “Wouldn’t be who I am today without The Rock”: Fast and Furious Star John Cena Has No Hard Feelings Against Dwayne Johnson Despite Replacing Him in $8.4B Franchise
John Cena Lashes Out at The Rock For Leaving WWE
Dwayne Johnson‘s expansive career across three of the greatest industries to exist – football, WWE, and Hollywood – has been a widely documented one. But for the duration of his involvement in the respective career choices, Johnson has rarely been prolifically pitted as the greatest of all time, despite his ability to win over the audience in whatever he does.
He has garnered a talent for being not only the most beloved but also the highest-paid, highest-earning, and highly coveted talent in WWE as well as Hollywood. But during his transition from the former to the latter, those who were left behind in the world of wrestling took some offense to the ease with which the pro-wrestler chose the industry of make-believe over the one that he built his legacy in. John Cena was among those who dared to speak out about the roiling internal debate being carried out at WWE over Dwayne Johnson’s sudden absence:
“He’s a very good actor, he’s very successful, he’s done very well for himself, and associating with sports entertainment doesn’t do much for his acting career. It only helps out the sports entertainment audience so I get why he doesn’t come back. Just don’t f*** me around and tell me that you love this when you are just doing this to do something else.
That’s the only thing that gets me really pissed off. Being on the other side I learned how much of their hard-earned dollars are spent on our product. And to have that much admiration still, when he hasn’t been around, hasn’t been on TV, you gotta respect that from our fanbase and he just doesn’t give anything back, man. I wish he’d just show up, just say “Hi” and leave, it’s all he’s gotta do.”
Also read: Dwayne Johnson Hated Fast and Furious Co-Star John Cena Humiliating Him Despite Cena Starring in Movie Being Produced by The Rock: “I just didn’t like how he said it”
As innocently admonishing as John Cena was in his critique of the Brahma Bull, the subject of his derision, Dwayne Johnson himself did not take too kindly to his contemporary’s comments on his opted career switch and the decision to move forward after accomplishing a career-high in WWE.
Dwayne Johnson Reconciles With John Cena After Epic Fight
During a 2018 interview with Andy Cohen in Watch What Happens Live!, The Rock addressed the aftermath of John Cena’s decade-old remarks about his leaving WWE without considering the repercussions or taking the fans’ feelings into account. Clearly disappointed in his contemporary’s choice of words, especially considering how Cena hadn’t yet realized the amount of struggle and effort Johnson put into carving his own path out at Hollywood, he claimed:
“Well, I had left, and he had done a series of interviews… radio interviews, and I just felt – somebody referenced me and said, ‘Hey, is The Rock ever coming back?’ And he was saying… he said, ‘I’m not quite too sure,’ but I just didn’t like how he said it, and it stuck with me.
So, years later when I went back, I talked to Vince McMahon and we thought, ‘Well what if we actually took that and created this kind of thing?’ And I said, ‘Perfect.’ Fortunately, having the biggest box office record in WWE history which was awesome, and then once it was all done, like all silly beefs like that, we were so cool.”
Also read: “Thank you, The Rock”: John Cena Revealed Dwayne Johnson’s Sage Advice That Ultimately Helped Him Replace Johnson in $8.4B Fast and Furious Franchise
To date, the John Cena vs. Dwayne Johnson showdown at Wrestlemania XXVIII, which witnessed the latter establishing his victory over John Cena, remains one of the greatest fights to have ever been etched into the legacy of WWE history. 3 years after his comments about The Rock, John Cena too transitioned into Hollywood in 2011, a move that he found was much more difficult and extreme than anyone could anticipate. His respect for The Rock, especially after the latter helped Cena navigate the treacherous waters of a first-timer in the industry, grew and the pro-wrestler has remained an irrevocable supporter of the People’s Champion ever since.
Source: Watch What Happens Live!