Wednesday, July 27, 2011

My Favorite Wrestlers Ever: #3

Photo Credit:

The Rock
Three Favorite Matches: vs. Steve Austin at WrestleMania X-7, vs. Chris Jericho at Survivor Series Vengeance 2001, vs. Hulk Hogan at WrestleMania X-8
Three Favorite Moments: Verbally sparring with Chris Jericho upon the latter's debut, This Is Your Life with Mick Foley, The promo post Royal Rumble 2000 where he mocked Big Show for the first time

The Rock spent an entire career proving people wrong. People thought he couldn't succeed after tanking as the "blue chipper". They were wrong. People said he couldn't wrestle. By 2000, he'd improved to the point where he was arguably the best worker in the company. People thought he'd never be a movie star. Well, to our chagrin, he became one. People never thought he'd come back. Well, he did. Sure, his definition of "never leaving" again may be different than some fans', but for me, I don't care if he appears once a year or once a show.

I've always been entranced by Rocky though, so maybe I'm biased. No shit I'm biased, but if being a fan of the most naturally charismatic man ever to step into a wrestling ring is wrong, then I don't ever wanna be right. Seriously, I always wondered back in the day when I'd go into those AOL chat rooms (I was in high school/college, shut up) and people would be bashing Rocky and pumping up guys like, ugh, Triple H. I mean, what, don't you like witty guys who say funny shit? Oh that's right, he couldn't "work" because he only did like three moves. Wrestling hipsterdom, smh. And I bet half of those people who hated on Rock were excited as shit to see him back this year. Maybe more or less, I don't know.

But what I do know is that the guy was seriously, and still is actually, a dynamo with a microphone in his hand. We already knew that though. That's like watching Aaron Rodgers play football and remark that he's really good at throwing the ball. Well no shit. What really sealed the deal for me was his mastery at actually wrestling. There was a time when he was middle of the pack at best, although his "terribleness" at wrestling was vastly overstated by smark-ass teenagers who think that throwing moves is the only way to have a good match. Go back and look at some of his classic matches against Steve Austin or Triple H or Mick Foley or later on, when he really came into his own against guys like Kurt Angle and Brock Lesnar. He held his own end of the bargain easily.

I think the fact that he was so easily imitable for me, and yet hard to imitate at the same time, made him one of my favorites. It's paradoxical to say something like that. I guess what I mean to say is that I always liked trying to imitate Rocky, but I could never really get him down right. I guess that's his allure... we all wanted to be like him, but there is only one Great One, only one Rock.

And I for one can't wait to see him back in a WWE ring, April 1, 2012.

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