Cena Shuts Down The Rock: Now It's Personal!

Barry SaundersContributor IIIFebruary 29, 2012

Hear go the sound of the wreckin' ball

Boom and Pound

When I Shut 'em down…

Lyrics to “Shut ‘Em Down” by Public Enemy

I never thought I would ever see it…The Rock…the most electrifying man in sports entertainment…gulp was shut down Monday night on Raw.

What the….

Was it just me, or did the Rock seem uncomfortable? I mean…the goose bump angle was nice, but the Rock did not seem comfortable Monday night. The audible pauses, the stumbling over his words, and the end of his promo after Cena clowned him seemed rushed and hurried. Then we have the whole notes on the wrist thing.

I recall a time when The Rock could do a promo like no other. I recall his famous initial encounter with Booker T…

The Rock: Who in the blue hell are you?

Booker T: Who am I? Who am I? I am—

The Rock: It doesn’t matter who you are!

The Rock has a way with words, and his swagger in the ring was at one time unmatched.

Until now...

For all the boos he receives every night and for all his mechanical like motions in the ring, one thing is undeniable about John Cena: He is gold on the mic. Hell, Randy Orton even said that in an interview. From his initial appearance on SmackDown against Kurt angle, where Cena embraced the term “ruthless aggression” to his appearance on a Discovery Channel documentary about wresting—in particular OVW and Ultimate Pro Wrestling—to his infamous battle rap about Brock Lesnar:

This is serious now. Kill the beat.

Yo, people think I'm crazy. That's what everyone is telling me.

That me beating you is like you winning a spelling bee.

That's okay because tonight I silence them all.

You're a Neanderthal. So I'll use words that are small.

"Big Brock Lesnar. Here comes the pain!

God build me strong. Forget to give me brain."

You hop around all day like there's potatoes in your crack.

That's a nice tattoo of your mother on your back.

Cena is very confident and looked so Monday night in the ring. He strolled down to the ring, despite the boos, as if he were about to collect an award. His swagger was unmatched, and the John Cena who had a “degree in Thugonomics” was back.  He got in the ring, laughing as if he were Anderson Silva looking across the octagon at…oh well…me. He looked The Rock in the eye, and called him out over the notes written on The Rock’s wrist.

Wait a minute…Since when does the Rock need notes to cut a promo? I mean here is a guy who used to cut fantastic promos off the top of his head. Remember this gem from a Monday Night Raw on MLK day about 10 years back:       

Whoopin ass…whoopin ass! Good God almighty the Rock’s whoopin ass!

During Monday’s exchange The Rock had a look in his eye. At first it was a look of “Whatever kid…you are nothing to me,” but when Cena made the comment about the notes, and then got in his face and promised to deliver a legendary ass whoopin to a legend, the look in The Rock’s eyes changed from one of “Whatever…I got you punk,” to “Did that fool just clown me?!” The Rock went from crowd entertainer to a genuinely pissed off Brahma Bull. Check out what The Rock calls Cena as his music plays, and the Rock is pacing back and forth like a caged beast.

Now sure the Rock had his moments during last Monday night’s show. From mentioning how real men do not need someone else to fight for them, to the now famous “King Pow bitch” label Cena will have to hear from the WWE Universe. Once Cena came into the ring and cut Rocky to the bone, however, the Great One looked angry and dare I say genuinely pissed. The Rock got shut down Monday night, and it is obvious he is out of practice. Maybe it is because he has gotten too used to reading scripts.

One thing is for sure: Cena and the Rock are going to have one hell of a match at WM28, and I can’t wait. Cena is throwing down the gauntlet. He has beaten the Rock at his own game, much like Punk out shined Jericho Monday night on the mic.

The Rock, much like Chris Jericho is a victim of the path he laid during his time in WWE. See, Cena and Punk are pro wrestling fans and pro wrestlers. This is their life, and I would be worried for the general public if these guys did not have wrestling as an outlet for their aggression.

They grew up watching The Rock, Jericho, Austin and Flair. Hell, the guys they watched learned to cut promos from the likes of Gorgeous George and Muhammad Ali. Punk and Cena know how to talk because they learned from the best, and in a few weeks, they are going to fight two of the best in the business.

The Rock and Jericho will bring their A-game. Their pride and the legacies they built will not allow anything less, and as a result of these genuine, yet orchestrated feuds, we the fans are in for one of the best WrestleManias ever.