The Rock Responds to Locker Room Criticism over WrestleMania Spot

Sharon GlencrossContributor IApril 5, 2013

EAST RUTHERFORD, NJ - FEBRUARY 16: Dwayne 'The Rock' Johnson attends a press conference to announce that MetLife Stadium will host WWE Wrestlemania 29 in 2013 at MetLife Stadium on February 16, 2012 in East Rutherford, New Jersey. (Photo by Michael N. Todaro/Getty Images)
Michael N. Todaro/Getty Images

It's hardly a secret that there's been more than a little resentment of Dwayne "The Rock" Johnson in the WWE locker room.

Back in February, PWTorch reported that "The Great One" was facing anger from the other wrestlers for a multitude of reasons, including the feeling among many that he was using WWE as "a marketing tool" with which to promote his upcoming movies. His in-ring was also getting deeply critical reviews.  

Some wrestlers have been up front about their feelings.

In a recent interview with Mark Madden (via Inside Pulse), CM Punk complained about part-timer stars like The Rock being all over the WrestleMania card. Even the more diplomatic Dolph Ziggler admitted to Comcast's Xfinity blog that he was "a little mad" about The Rock being back and main eventing the biggest show of the year.

In fairness to the wrestlers, some of these criticisms are/were valid.

Trailers for G.I. Joe: Retaliation were all over Raw in the weeks up to its release and probably did help the film's numbers at the box office. The Rock's sloppy in-ring work also leaves a lot to be desired. Indeed, there's a grim amusement to be found in trying to guess just how long into one of his matches it will be before his cardio goes completely.

However, it also cannot be disputed that The Rock is a major star and a huge draw. Maybe if some of the full-time guys on the roster could deliver anything close to the numbers he could, WWE wouldn't be forced to bring him back time and time again.

Speaking to the Boston Herald, The Rock did address some of the criticisms aimed at him, cryptically saying:

For the guys in the locker room, it has to be more than just, "I'm ready to carry the company." It has to be, "I'm ready to carry the company and then I'm ready to carry the company to places it's never been." That's hard to do considering the precedent that's already been set.

He finished by stating: "I'm WWE for life. I always look at it like that."

So, The Rock probably isn't done with wrestling after WrestleMania 29. There's no doubt he will continue to make semi-regular appearances here and there, in between movies.

But will the locker room ever warm up to the star?


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