The Rock Names His Top Three Wrestlers Of All Time
WWE celebrated the 17th birthday of WrestleMania X8 last Sunday, March 17. That also means that it’s been 17 years since the Icon vs Icon match took place between Hulk Hogan and Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson. Do you guys realize how old we are?
After the festivities, The Rock paid tribute to the greats that paved the way and inspired him to become the “most electrifying man of all of entertainment.”
Johnson wrote that “there was no Heavyweight Championship on the line. Just two men. Just two careers.”
He called the 85,000+ people at the Toronto SkyDome that night “the most insane ELECTRIC crowd” he ever had the privilege to perform in front of. To determine who would go down as the “GREATEST OF ALL TIME”, The Rock faced his “friend and childhood hero”, Hulk Hogan. And as the history books show, The People’s Champ would topple the Hulkster at the grandest stage of them all.
“Torch passed,” Johnson wrote. “Grateful.”
Although his victory would earn him the recognition as the GOAT, he begged to differ, and instead gave the names of three legends in the business: Hulk Hogan, ‘Stone Cold’ Steve Austin, and ‘The Nature Boy’ Ric Flair.
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Torch passed. Grateful. This past weekend @WWE celebrated the 17th anniversary of what was billed as “ICON vs ICON” to determine who would go down in @WWE history as THE GREATEST OF ALL TIME. It was yours truly, VS The Immortal Hulk Hogan at WrestleMania. What made this match so special was that there was no Heavyweight Championship on the line. Just two men. Just two careers. And 85,000+ of the most insane ELECTRIC crowd I have ever had the privilege to perform in front of. It was almost as if every single person that night in the Toronto SkyDome made up their mind that they would give every ounce of energy they had because they knew this match was only going to be seen once in a lifetime. My friend and childhood hero, Hulk Hogan passed the torch to me on this historic night which decreed me becoming “THE GREATEST OF ALL TIME”, but the truth is - to me - the GOAT are the three men below who paved the way for me and so many others in pro wrestling/ @hulkhogan @ricflairnatureboy @steveaustinbsr I just worked very hard, connected with the audience and caught a break. These GOATS were good enough to recognize I had something to offer and graciously passed the torch. Grateful.
Johnson, who has since become one of the biggest and most bankable movie stars on the planet, shot to fame in the '90s alongside Austin—another of the fastest rising stars of WWE’s “Attitude Era.” Flair was among the Rock’s high-profile feuds in the ring.
“I just worked very hard, connected with the audience and caught a break,” The Rock posted. “These GOATS were good enough to recognize I had something to offer and graciously passed the torch.”
Do you agree with The Rock’s picks of the three greatest wrestlers of all time? Who’s on your shortlist?
This story originally appeared on Spin.ph. Minor edits have been made by the Esquiremag.ph editors.