It only took one year after his pro wrestling debut for Dwayne Johnson to become a top person on the WWE radar. Coming from a long lineage of family who were wrestlers in the Fatu/Anao’i family, coupled with being the son of WWE Hall of Famer/former WWE Tag Team Champion Rocky Johnson and grandson of WWE Hall of Famer “High Chief” Peter Maivia, “The Blue Chipper” Rocky Maivia was born.

Maivia made his debut at the Survivor Series pay per view in 1996. He joined a team led by Marc Mero, which also consisted of Jake “The Snake” Roberts and the Stalker, defeating the opposing team of Crush, Goldust, Hunter Hearst Helmsley, and Jerry “The King” Lawler.

The WWE’s decision to make him an instant star was not well-received by the audience and fans. His character was quite bland, including his look and theme song. What made matters worse, is that he won the WWE Intercontinental Championship by defeating Hunter Hearst Helmsley just three months later.

Thankfully, the WWE realized the error of their ways and totally revolutionized his character into “The Rock,” which propelled him to be one of the biggest stars that has ever stepped in a WWE ring. Well, I suppose they had to start somewhere, and a cutter-cutter babyface at Survivor Series 1996 was that commencement.

Interestingly enough, that debut was exactly 18 years ago to the day. Oh, how time flies.

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