Real reason why Rock vs Roman Reigns happening in 2024: What happened after SmackDown goes off-air, Rock said:
WWE SmackDown aired on the FOX Network in front of over 10,000 fans in Alabama last night. The show was notable for many reasons, including the debut of Tiffany Stratton and the signing of Naomi, along with the shocking betrayal of Bayley by Damage CTRL.
While there were certainly plenty of noteworthy moments on the show, nothing compares to how the event concluded. The company promised a face-off between Roman Reigns and Cody Rhodes, and the two had an epic promo. Then Cody oddly said that he wasn’t going to finish his story at WrestleMania.
From there, The Rock showed up to the shock of everybody except Cody. The two exchanged pleasantries, and The American Nightmare just left with nothing else being said. The Rock and Roman Reigns then had a staredown that ultimately concluded the program.
Many fans are surprised by this going down. Cody Rhodes won the 2024 Men’s Royal Rumble Match and was seemingly prepared to finish his story. Instead, The Rock is seemingly battling The Tribal Chief at WrestleMania. Why was this booking decision made? There are a handful of possible answers for the unexpected move.
Below are four reasons why The Rock is facing Roman Reigns at WWE WrestleMania 40.
#4. It is arguably the bigger match
There are many debates flooding social media regarding this move. Some WWE fans absolutely hate the decision, while others are either excited or are willing to let it play out. Meanwhile, some are defending the move by noting that The Rock vs. Roman Reigns is a bigger match.
Cody Rhodes is definitely a star in WWE, there is no denying that. With that being said, The Rock is one of the biggest movie stars in the world. He has become a household name. His presence is bigger than anything Cody could do, at least in theory. That could be the rationale behind the decision.
However, an argument could be made against this. WrestleMania has already told most of the tickets available, and the company isn’t looking to obtain pay-per-view buys. Still, they may believe the publicity of The Rock competing could be worth it.
#3. The Rock is growing older and may not have another chance
The Rock on RAW
The Rock is an icon in WWE. He first began his career in the company back in 1996. While he started as Rocky Maivia, he eventually evolved and transitioned himself into the man fans know as The Rock.
The People’s Champion is a multi-time WWE Champion who was a top-tier star for years. Still, it is worth noting that he retired from in-ring action on a full-time basis over two decades ago. His last real match was over a decade ago.
The big-time movie star has gone a long time without wrestling and is now 51 years of age. The window in which The Rock can do this match with Roman Reigns narrows further every year. Triple H and World Wrestling Entertainment may have booked the bout because they may see it as a “now or never” situation.
#2. Cody Rhodes may not be staying with the company
Cody Rhodes at Money in the Bank 2023
There is no doubt that Cody Rhodes has proven himself to be a top star in WWE. Not only did he win the Royal Rumble Match on two consecutive occasions, but he headlined WrestleMania last year. He even had an epic feud with Brock Lesnar, where he won two of the three matches in the trilogy.
Cody Rhodes could and arguably should be the face of the company for years to come. However, there may be a slight hang-up. According to multiple reports from December, The American Nightmare is yet to sign a new contract with WWE.
While it was noted that he was expected to sign a deal soon, no news on the contract being finalized has been reported. The Rock may be battling Roman Reigns because The American Nightmare didn’t re-sign and may intend to leave the promotion once his contract expires.
#1. WWE might want Roman Reigns to break more records as champion
August 30, 2020, was a big day for WWE. On that date, Roman Reigns won the Universal Championship. Less than two years later, he unified that belt with the WWE Championship. He has remained on top of the world ever since.
With Roman having a title reign of over 1,250 days, only three men throughout the company’s history have been champions for longer. Hulk Hogan had a WWF Title reign of almost 1,500 days. Meanwhile, both Bob Backlund and Bruno Sammartino held the world title for over 2,000 days each.
We all can assume that Roman will defeat The Rock when the two clash at WrestleMania, while a bout with Cody would have all but guaranteed a title change. The company may want Roman to beat Hulk Hogan’s record or even attempt to beat the other two, which is why this match was booked instead.