There are many rivalries in combat sports, but some just hit differently. It may be the sheer talents of the two individuals or it may be something that clicks. The hallmark of a great athlete is their capability to make a bad opponent look good. What happens when both competitors are of great stature? It is bound to create instant classics one after the other. WWE legends Dwayne ‘The Rock‘ Johnson and Stone Cold had an iconic rivalry back in the late 90s and early 2000s. The latter once could not help but appreciate the wrestler-turned-actor.

In their prime, not many feuds come close to the historic tussles the two had. While each was a superstar in their own right, a certain level of charisma oozed once they faced each other. ‘The Texas Rattlesnake’ spilled the beans on his relationship with The People’s Champ in a past appearance at The Kelly Clarkson Show.

Stone Cold was full of praise for Dwayne Johnson


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The 6-time WWE champion said, “And it’s been a deal where, you know, Rock and I have been friends from when he first came into the company and we turned into a rivalry. And at many times, you know, when he was the bad or I was the bad guy, and when we were both good guys, we always had a great friendship and a lot of respect and a lot of love for each other.”

And the thing about The Rock was, he was one of, probably my most favorite opponent. He brought out the best in me and I brought out the best in him.” added Austin. 

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The legendary duo headlined ‘The Showcase Of Immortals’ WrestleMania a record three times. A feat that has not been managed even by the most accomplished competitors. And that comes from a promotion that can boast of ‘The Immortal’ Hulk Hogan and Cenation Leader John Cena, which were once part of its roster. Johnson got the best of Austin in their final encounter at WrestleMania.

A rivalry for the ages

The Attitude Era is filled with memorable moments between The Brahma Bull and Austin. It can be argued that their rivalry was a major driving force behind the company’s unprecedented success during that time. Not to forget, this was the time period when WWE had entered the mainstream.


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Austin made a remarkable in-ring return last year at the WrestleMania 38 mega-event. This was after an absence from the squared circle for two decades. After weeks of mocking by The Prizefighter Kevin Owens, he finally appeared and gave him a monumental beating amidst the roaring crowd. There were speculations of a follow-up appearance by the legend at WrestleMania 39 as well. But he has addressed the reason for his recent workout that was behind the rumors.

Johnson undoubtedly has been the beneficiary of the hugely successful feud between the two. He has since carved out a successful and stable career in Hollywood.


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Stone Cold and The Rock’s rivalry was certainly a once-in-a-lifetime occurrence. It is almost impossible to replicate their insanely popular chemistry. While there have been many conflicts that might come close, none have touched the highest ceiling these two have. And it seems as though none would ever surpass it in the future either.

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Written by

Ritvic Pratap Singh


One take at a time

Ritvic Pratap Singh is a WWE and AEW writer at EssentiallySports. Ritvic is very passionate about WWE and pro wrestling as the image of a wrestling ring always filled him with excitement and AJ Styles his favorite WWE superstar. Besides the wrestling world, Ritvic also has a profound love for soccer and is an ardent Manchester City fan.
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Edited by

Debmallya Chakraborty