The WWE’s plan has been in motion for a while now: John Cena defeats The Rock to win the WWE Championship at WrestleMania, and The Rock then heads back to Hollywood.
Or so we thought.
The more time that goes by, the more likely it seems that The Rock is going to stick around a bit longer. Although he’ll never be a full-timer again, he looks poised to pop up from time to time until he decides that he no longer wants to do so.
That’s precisely why, despite all of the backlash directed toward Rock vs. Cena: Part Two, fans shouldn’t expect the feud between the WWE’s two biggest stars to end at WrestleMania 29.
After all, it doesn’t make much sense for a rivalry to end with a split series.
Look at boxing for example. If a top boxer beats another boxer in one fight and then loses to him in their rematch, does the feud stop there? No, it goes to a third fight to break the tie.
That’s exactly what is going to happen with The Rock and Cena.
With the widespread expectation being that Cena will beat The Rock to win the WWE title at WrestleMania 29, The Rock will, of course, be entitled to a rematch at some point. When and where he wants it is largely up to him.
But according to the Wrestling Observer Newsletter (via WrestlingInc.com), The Rock has “agreed to work” Extreme Rules, which we all know is the pay-per-view after WrestleMania. That would suggest that we’ll get Rock vs. Cena III at the PPV, although that hasn’t been made perfectly clear just yet.
Ether way, though, The Rock and Cena won’t be finished with each other after WrestleMania 29. In some way, shape or form, their rivalry is bound to continue until the WWE milks everything out of it that the company can.
After all, the WWE knows that Rock vs. Cena is the biggest rivalry it can currently hold. That’s why, despite all of the criticisms and the predictability surrounding it, The Rock and Cena will face each other at its biggest PPV of the year for the second year in a row.
While it’s easy to complain about The Rock’s status as a part-timer and the predictability of this feud, what many of us fail to realize is that we are witnessing a true rarity in pro wrestling: an extended feud between two of the top names ever when both are able to still put on great matches.
Throughout its history, the WWE hasn’t had that opportunity very often, and odds are that it won’t get a ton of chances to do so in the future, either. That’s largely because a guy like The Rock just doesn’t come around every few years, and neither does a guy like Cena.
Cena and The Rock are both “once in a generation” performers whose generations somehow managed to cross, and now, the WWE is going to make sure it takes advantage of that with a very lengthy feud between the two—a feud that won’t end after two matches.
Just imagine if Mike Tyson, in his prime, faced Muhammad Ali, also in his prime, and let’s say that Ali won the first match while Tyson managed to win the rematch. But then, both stars inexplicably decided that it was best to end their rivalry at 1-1.
Makes no sense, right? The same logic applies to The Rock and Cena.
If Cena beats The Rock at WrestleMania 29 like most expect him to and then The Rock never gets another match with Cena, this rivalry will never get a true ending. The Rock, Cena and the feud itself will have absolutely no closure.
When will the rivalry between John Cena and The Rock end?
The predictable way to conclude this rivalry would be for Cena to beat The Rock at both WrestleMania 29 and Extreme Rules, but consider that The Rock has yet to lose a match since coming back and that suddenly seems like a tall task.
When you consider too that almost everyone expected Cena to beat The Rock at WrestleMania 28 in 2012 and for The Rock to then go back to Hollywood, a feud that has seemed so predictable suddenly doesn’t.
The Rock will, in all likelihood, indeed lose to Cena at WrestleMania 29. But with the proverbial rubber match needed and reports that The Rock will be at Extreme Rules, don’t expect him to head back to Hollywood just yet.
He came to the WWE to start a feud with Cena, and he’s not going anywhere until that feud is truly finished.
Drake Oz is a WWE Featured Columnist for Bleacher Report. Follow him on Twitter!