Two rock related questions:
1. My friends and I have been debating the Rock lately. One point of contention is that I claim he main-evented 5 wrestlemania’s in a row, my friend claims only 3. WM 15-17 are obvious, but at 18 his match was clearly the most important (since he and hogan are on the poster) and even Jericho and HHH admit it should have been last. WM 19, while the Austin-Rock match wasn’t quite as blow-away the main event as Rock-Hogan, Jericho refers to it as the main event on the Austin DVD and and JR says the only reason it didn’t go last was because nobody was sure about Austin’s health after the previous night. So what say you, did he main event 3 in a row, or 5?
Clearly the main event of 18 was Hogan v. Rock, but 19 was either Hogan v. Vince or Angle v. Lesnar depending on your point of view. Rock v. Austin was a distant third either way, so that would be four Wrestlemanias in a row by my watch.
2. I’ve heard for years about how losing at a certain show derailed a wrestler’s career or gave them a choker label (like, oh, lex luger?). Yet the Rock lost ALL THE TIME. He lost at WM 15. He lost at WM 17. He lost at WM 16 (allowing Hunter to be the first heel to retain at WM). He only won his first belts because McMahon screwed Foley, then because he played an audio clip of foley quitting, then because Big Show interfered. In fact, he’s never won a belt at WM. He only retained at 14 because Shamrock wouldn’t stop beating him up (though the image of him holding up the belt from a stretcher was awesome). My point is, Rock lost multiple times, yet it never slowed him down at all. So, from this should I ascertain that maybe booking wasn’t the only thing that held other wrestlers back, or was the Rock just that much more awesome than everyone else?
Rock was just that awesome because you could beat him like a drum and all he had to do was cut a promo on RAW the next night to instantly regain all of his heat. Most others are not blessed with that kind of talent. Plus people believed in the Rock and bought him as a main eventer and World champion even after he lost, whereas Luger came off as much more fake.
3. You’ve mentioned, and others have too, that Triple H/Taker doesn’t need to be at WM this year, but isn’t that the whole point? If it’s not at WM, then it’s not for the streak, and it’s just two old guys fighting. Don’t get me wrong, this WM looks stacked, but if they’re going to do this match, isn’t the the only time they can (given that I’m not sure Taker will still be able to walk in a year? Though he could probably regrow his hair by then)?
My point wasn’t really that it didn’t need to be at Wrestlemania, but more that the build is so awesome that it seems like a waste not to use it on a B-show instead and thus boost the buyrate of, say, Extreme Rules from 150,000 to 400,000 or more. Wrestlemania probably isn’t going to make much more money based on that match, but the other shows could use the help. I understand that it won’t happen that way, of course.