The Rock’s WrestleMania 40 Match Was Part Of TKO Board of Directors Deal

The agreement for The Rock to battle Roman Reigns at WrestleMania was finalized weeks prior to Cody Rhodes winning the Royal Rumble. This was not a deal they made public, but it was part of his appointment to TKO’s Board of Directors.

The Rock’s Big WrestleMania 40 Deal

Last month, The Rock was appointed to the TKO Board of Directors. As a component of the arrangement, he acquired complete ownership of the “The Rock” name and received $30 million in company stock.

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Dave Meltzer noted on Wrestling Observer Radio, that The Rock wrestling Reigns at WrestleMania was also part of the agreement. This deal was made on January 3rd, and that begs the question as to why WWE still booked Cody Rhodes to win the 2024 men’s Royal Rumble match.

When (Rock) made the deal on January 3 to come in (facing Roman at WrestleMania) was part of the deal. Why Cody Rhodes won the Royal Rumble is a question that I cannot answer because nobody will answer it for me.

Apart from Nick Khan and Ari Emanuel, very few individuals, if any, were informed about the arrangement for Rock to challenge Reigns at WrestleMania. The prevailing sentiment backstage during the Royal Rumble was that it would be Rhodes vs. Reigns.

I reported on January 28th that, “The only people who really know what is happening with Rock are the people at the very top of the company, and they are all playing it very close to the vest.” This was after Cody Rhodes won his second consecutive Royal Rumble match and punched his ticket to WrestleMania 40.

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WWE Will Use The Rock Controversy

WWE now intends to incorporate the negative response to Rhodes being excluded from the WrestleMania main event into the storyline. Dave Meltzer continued to explain that everything played out in this way, but there is no way to tell how the storyline will advance from this point on.

(It) played out the way they wanted it to play out. The plan as of Friday night was Seth Rollins and Cody Rhodes and we’ll see how it plays out because now they’re trying to turn it into a story and we’ll see how the story goes.

The Only Way WWE Would Change WrestleMania Main Event Plan

I previously reported that The Rock taking Cody Rhodes’ spot at WrestleMania was seen as a “power play.” When inquiring if this situation resembles his attempt to enter the DC Cinematic Universe with Black Adam, where he wanted to take control of the operation, I was informed that it’s a “great analogy.”

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WWE is also well aware about fan backlash. It has become impossible to overlook at this point, with USA Today, TMZ, and other outlets running stories about fans being upset over The Rock taking Cody Rhodes’ spot against Roman Reigns at WrestleMania 40.

When inquiring whether the fan backlash could alter the prospective WrestleMania plans, the response was, “there’s no chance in hell.” The only thing that could change the direction for WrestleMania’s main event at this point is Dwayne Johnson changing his mind.