Hulk Holland's midweek meltdown: The Rock and Schlock Connection

Michael N. Todaro

The Rock is going to play Hercules in a movie that starts filming in five weeks. It should come as no surprise then, to hear him walking and talking like a pro wrestling Demigod.

The Rock recently tweeted that he's already back to "hardcore training."

Not bad for a guy who claims he "tore his abdomen and adductor muscles off the bone" during his match with John Cena at WrestleMania 29. You know, that big pay-per-view (PPV) special that cost $70 and didn't generate the kind of business it was expected to.

That was less than two weeks ago and he's already going hardcore in the gym. I guess those couple extra hours of healing he got by blowing off RAW the next night really worked wonders for his recovery.

Hulk Hogan: I tore my back muscles slamming the Giant!
IWC: STFU you self-serving psycho.

The Rock: I tore my core during multiple rest spots with John Cena!
IWC: My gawd, what a warrior!

When I worked at a supermarket as a teenager, I did a no call/no show. There was panic in the stockroom because I wasn't there to unload the pallets. The manager called me up all huffy, asking for an explanation and I was like, "Uh, I got injured. It's my toe. Looks pretty serious." It was actually an ingrown toenail I had for awhile, but hey, I needed the day off to go see Total Recall with my homies.

Sound familiar?

I've seen tweets that read, "C'mon guys, WWE verified the injury." Oh really? Is that who we are relying on now for the flow of genuine information? WWE? Their entire business model is built on fantasy! What else are they going to say?

"WWE has verified that Rock has indeed skipped out on Monday Night RAW ... simply because he wanted to."

The Rock is an actor and a professional wrestler. Selling is his job. Maybe he suffered a slight tear during his match and had to work through the pain, or maybe he blew out a tendon in his groin. Only he and his phantom physicians know for sure.

I don't begrudge him for selling the injury angle, like he did last year after (cough) tearing his hamstring.

In fact, I don't begrudge him at all. Someone asked me the other day, "Why do you hate the Rock so much?" I don't. I'm one of his biggest fans. But I haven't seen The Rock in over 10 years. What I have seen, is Dwayne Johnson playing the role of The Rock.

There's a big difference.

Take the Martin Riggs of Lethal Weapon 1 and compare him to the flippant clown in Lethal Weapon 4. One was edgy, cool and a helluva fighter. The other was a caricature of the original performance separated by several years of success.

Johnson is now a big-time movie star and that's great. I've enjoyed a bunch of his movies.

But it's become painfully obvious that he can't be a movie star and a professional wrestler. Both are full-time commitments that can't play second fiddle to each other. He wants to come back from time-to-time to get a cheap pop, liven up a crowd or just layeth the smackethdown on somebody's candy ass?

I'll stand and cheer.

What I won't do, is act eternally grateful for the opportunity to gaze upon the awesome star power of the mighty Rock, when he turns in a wretched performance during an overpriced show that can't even bother to include guys like Antonio Cesaro, who are putting in the work every day to earn the right for my money.

And let's not forget about Damien Sandow, who was bumped for a rap star who hasn't had a hit since the Godzilla soundtrack.

But we got The Rock!

WWE wanted to cash in on "The Brahma Bull" one last time at WrestleMania. Instead, they may have cashed out, according to these reports. That's fine with me. I don't mind paying to see The Rock beat people up and call them names, but at least now I can do it for $12 on a Friday night and get some stale popcorn out of the deal.

That's called getting bang for your buck. Bang! Bang!

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