Dwayne The Rock Johnson Discusses Surprise WWE Smackdown Return On The Tonight Show

Now that the SAG-AFTRA strike has come to an end, actors are once again allowed to discuss and promote their projects, leading to a wave of press appearances from stars such as Dwayne "The Rock" Johnson. Appearing on "The Tonight Show," Johnson covered several topics including his return to "WWE SmackDown" as The Rock back in September.


"It was incredible," Johnson said. The actor explained that he was in Boulder, Colorado for an appearance on "College GameDay" when he learned that WWE was hosting "SmackDown" in nearby Denver. After making a call to longtime friend and WWE President Nick Khan, arrangements were made for Johnson to show up during the broadcast.

"I've been really lucky over the years to entertain in a lot of different ways, but that kind of connection with the WWE audience, ... there's nothing like it," Johnson said. "The people went nuts. 13,000 people sounded like 130,000 people, and it was just incredible."

Johnson's appearance saw him confronting Austin Theory alongside Pat McAfee, former NFL punter and part-time WWE commentator. Though it wasn't the focus of his appearance, Johnson also had a brief encounter backstage with John Cena, who was in a slightly longer run with the company due to the strike. The two acknowledged their history in the short segment and that was the end of Johnson's one-night return.


Though his return didn't coincide with a match, many fans have not given up on the idea of Johnson wrestling once more. A perfect opponent is waiting for him — his cousin, Roman Reigns. Johnson revealed that the match against Reigns was discussed as an option for WWE WrestleMania 39, but it didn't quite come together, leaving the possibility open for the future.

If you use any of the quotes in this article, please credit "The Tonight Show" with a h/t to Wrestling Inc. for the transcription.