Legendary WWE Feud Discussed: Jim Ross Analyzes The Rock and Steve Austin

“Austin always had an eye out for the other talents as potential opponents."- Ross said.

by Sead Dedovic
Legendary WWE Feud Discussed: Jim Ross Analyzes The Rock and Steve Austin
© Mike Coppola/Getty Images Entertainment

Jim Ross discussed interesting topics during the "Grilling Jr" podcast, and one of them was The Rock and Steve Austin feud from 1998. Ross emphasized that Austin was someone who could recognize talent and the right opponent. Analyzing The Rock, he realized that he was the right person for him. The two of them knew how to put on a show and impress everyone multiple times.

The Rock is one of the most recognizable figures in WWE history. His talent was noticed immediately upon his arrival in the company, and over time he gained more and more sympathy and, according to many, became one of the greatest wrestlers in the history of this sport.

“Austin always had an eye out for the other talents as potential opponents. And he — you know, you look at The Rock from head to toe with his physique, his mannerisms, his ability to talk, et cetera, et cetera. And it really becomes that no-brainer. And Steve paid attention. He knew at some point in time that the day would come when he and Rock would begin some sort of little journey together. It wasn’t a little journey, because they headlined in one-on-one matches three WrestleManias. Three! That’s unheard of in today’s world.”- he said, as quoted by pwmania.com

Jim Ross
Jim Ross© Slaven Vlasic/Getty Images for SiriusXM

Ross and WWE fans were thrilled with what Austin and The Rock had to offer them at that time. They had the opportunity to headline three WrestleManias. What's impressive is that Ross still remembers those matches very clearly. He is happy to have had the chance to be part of that era and witness the qualities of wrestlers like the two of them.

“But they were so good and their chemistry was so flawless, they headlined WrestleMania 15, 17 and 19. And I remembered them all very well. I called all three of them, and it was a great honor to see the greatness in front of me that includes Austin and Rock. So it was good stuff, man. It was good stuff. I’m sure lucky and glad that I was doing my trade in that period of time.”- he continued.

Regarding The Rock's angle with Sgt. Slaughter, where he was portrayed as injured, it's clear that the creative team consistently provided him with material to work with and improve upon. This illustrates the mark of a great star; they take the initial storyline or concept given to them and elevate it to a higher standard, enhancing its impact and entertainment value.

Discussing The Rock's chemistry with Ken Shamrock, Jim Ross stresses how Dan Severn served as a transitional opponent leading to the rivalry with Shamrock. Once Rock and Shamrock faced off, their chemistry was amazing. Ross points out that their matches consistently delivered high-quality performances.

Jim Ross on The Rock's return

During the Grilling JR podcast, Jim Ross also spoke about The Rock returning for Wrestlemania 40. Although there is a lot of criticism on The Rock, Ross believes that such moments should not be given too much attention. Ross is happy that The Rock is back on the big stage, ready to give his best. The Rock is a man with huge experience, he knows the wrestling scene well and knows what is necessary to make a good show. Jim has tremendous confidence in him.

“It’s hard to read comments from those that criticize Rock’s return and how he returned, et cetera, et cetera, ad nauseam. Stop and think about it. You’re a booker, if you’re running the show, and you get an opportunity to retain the services of The Great One, then you don’t even think about it. That’s a very easy decision to make.

I’m glad that he’s back. He seems to be having a good time.”- he continued.

Ross shared his thoughts on AEW Dynamite, stressing that he found it to be an excellent show during his viewing on Wednesday night. He pointed out a positive aspect of the program, highlighting that the overall presentation appeared to have improved. 

Ross noted that the show had a cleaner and slicker appearance, with evident improvements in production values. He particularly commended the quality of the graphics, emphasizing that they were outstanding. This reflects a positive advancement in the overall visual appeal and professionalism of AEW Dynamite.

The leaders of AEW have ambitions to continue giving their all and once again confirm how serious AEW is as a company with ambitions to achieve great things. Their rating is growing day by day, with optimism that they will become an even bigger company.

Jim Ross The Rock Steve Austin