No one would be surprised if The Rock appears at Wrestlemania XL. Maybe it feels inevitable. WWE releasing The Rock action figure for their Wrestlemania XL line feels like an obvious foregone conclusion. (Side note: if you buy all the figures you can piece together a former WWE Tag Team Champion Nicholas action figure).
I bought my Wrestliemania Night 2 ticket as did most people before The Rock was on the radar. (maybe he is always on the radar) I don't even particularly love Cody Rhodes, but the story has been too darn compelling to turn away. Finish the Story, watch Roman Reigns get beat for the first time in a singles match and lose a title he has held for a record breaking amount of time and be part of Wrestlemania and wrestling history, those were the reasons I bought a ticket.
WWE proved they did not need The Rock to sell tickets to Wrestlemania XL. But The Rock being on Smackdown did prove he will get people to tune in, which is what WWE and TKO and Endeavor, I'm certain are gunning for at Wrestlemania XL. And unfortunately (and I do meant that) The Rock will sell more buys to a TV PPV audience than Roman Reigns vs. Cody Rhodes.
I think there is a large chance we get The Rock vs Roman Reigns at Wrestlemania XL with a predictable ending to that match. I don't think it would be a particularly good wrestling match. I think The Rock and Roman Reigns are talented enough performers to give a feel that is palatable and electrifying, the crowd will be hot or will it?
Let me restart.
The Rock will be at Wrestlemania XL. But one thing might spoil a Rock vs. Roman Reigns main event and that is ding dong Liberty Bell, it's in Philly. Lest I remind you the last time these two men were in a ring in Philadelphia almost 9 years ago they were both booed when Roman Reigns won the Royal Rumble in 2015.
In 2018, a Royal Rumble I attended people were dreading a Roman Reigns win and cheered uproariously at a Shinsuke Nakamura win that though exciting at the time, led to 5 years of abysmal booking. I don't think it has been until now that Shinsuke has been in the World title picture since that Rumble and Wrestlemania that have meant something, unless you consider his epic battles against WWE champion JINDER MAHAL (To God be the Glory, I love heel Jinder).
Philadelphia does not like Roman Reigns. Philadelphia might be okay with The Rock, but Philadelphia will not like them both in the ring fighting for a title with a predictable ending, and it is not the city to put the main event of potentially the biggest Wrestlemania of all time on Night 2 unless the WWEndeavor would like to give a middle finger "we make billions regardless" to its fans, to which a smart Philly crowd will respond with the loudest boos ever recorded to two of the top WWE superstars in history.
However, night 1 would be a great place for Reigns as a cocky Head of the Table/Tribal Chief/I won't be on TV for 3 months/defend my title only 51 times over 3 years, who has beaten everyone, to accept a challenge from The Rock with a Night 2 challenge from Cody Rhodes.
I'm not a booker or a writer for the WWE (but I'll be honest I should be), but any outcome for a Roman Reigns match at Wrestlemania XL is predictable any way you slice it. Roman vs. anyone else is a Roman win, Roman vs Cody Rhodes is a Roman loss and I'm okay with that. I'm okay that WWE has booked its way into predictability because it has written a very compelling story, multiple ones, from the Roman Reigns/Bloodline saga of the last 3 years. Jimmy/Jey at Wrestlemania, that's what they want as brothers, that's what we want as the fans, even if there is still a contingent for a Jey Uso World title run, it's not the biggest story. Even if Sami Zayn stays at the top of the card until Mania it's not the biggest story. Cody Rhodes legacy as a Rhodes winning the World title, Reigns legacy vs the Rock for Samaon dynasty Superiority are the biggest stories.
Why not tell them both even if we know how they end?