During an interview with Gary Vaynerchuck, a 5-time New York Times Best Selling Author, The Undertaker discussed his storied career. When asked which wrestler surprised him the most in terms of growth throughout his 30+ year tenure with the WWE, Taker answered that it was The Rock.
“It’s easy, it’s really easy, the biggest star in the world, The Rock,” Undertaker said. “He came into Madison Square Garden with the name Rocky Maivia and oh my gosh was it awful, they handcuffed him right out of the get go.”
Undertaker noted how the fans in the Garden over the years would always let you know if they appreciated you or disliked you. He said that the reaction The Rock received that night was telling.
“The Garden is merciless and they just lit him up,” Taker said. “I had no clue how charismatic he was and I just thought it was such a shame and that he wouldn’t be here long.”
In March of 1998, after spending two years as a member of the Nation of Domination, The Rock left the group and went on to become a singles star and build his own legacy. Taker said that he could tell that The Rock was special during his time with The Nation and how he knew it wouldn’t be long before he’d branch off and become a huge star.
“It didn’t take long for him, once he got to the Nation of Domination, it flipped,” Undertaker said. “By the time he was at the end of his run with them I knew he wasn’t going to be with them for long. You could just tell he was destined for success.”
If you use any of the quotes in this article, please credit Gary Vaynerchuck with a h/t to Wrestling Inc. for the transcription.