Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson is a major name in the world of professional wrestling and maintains a strong connection to the industry despite his flourishing career in Hollywood. He has done it all as far as being a pro wrestler is concerned, making a mark in WWE. That said, it seems Paul Heyman once wanted The Rock to go to ECW – which Vince McMahon immediately refused.

The Rock certainly had a pretty bad start in WWE as his Rocky Maivia character was hated by almost everyone. The infamous ‘Die, Rocky, Die’ chants are something no one will ever forget, especially The Rock.

While speaking on Busted Open Radio, Tommy Dreamer talked about how pro wrestlers were underutilized from the 1990s into the 2000s. Dreamer, who was a producer from the early days of ECW, provided a timeline concerning his backstage work starting with ECW and eventually into WWE.

Tommy Dreamer recalled ECW working with WWE back in 1996 as a way to give a platform to the underutilized talent on the WWE roster. Dreamer noted how they gave more emphasis to stars such as Doug Furnace, Phil Lafon and Al Snow. Dreamer then revealed that Paul Heyman wanted The Rock to go to ECW, but Vince McMahon immediately refused Heyman’s request.


“Real, real cool revolutionary stuff. I remember Paul [Heyman] being like, ‘Give me that guy.’ That guy was The Rock. They were doing nothing with him. Paul saw something with him, even back then, and Vince wouldn’t let him go. Would that have been awesome to have The Rock under the ECW Original banner? Yes, but it didn’t happen.”

Tommy Dreamer added that The Rock was a major ECW fan as well. That said, even Vince McMahon told The Rock he wasn’t ready for the big leagues after his first match. Thankfully, WWE realized The Rock’s value eventually and he would go on to become the megastar that he is today.

What’s your take on The Rock working in ECW? Do you think he would have flourished there? Let us know in the comments!

Subhojeet Mukherjee

Subhojeet is a professional wrestling fan for over 22 years. He got captivated by the sport during the Monday Night Wars and has a passion for it ever since. He also enjoys TV shows, movies, anime, novels and music, which broadens his perspective and appreciation for wrestling. He is a knowledgeable and respected voice in the industry.

Disqus Comments Loading...