In the 1980's Hulk Hogan was the man that made the WWE into the #1 promotion in America. He brought his magic to the WCW and made them the #1 promotion by being a bad guy. However, the WWE fought back and with the 1-2 punch of The Rock & Steve Austin they took over the lead in this wrestling war. While this WWE vs WCW feud was going on, the Rock followed in the path that Hulk paved for other wrestlers and took his wrestling fame to Hollywood. After the AOL-Time Warner merger, WCW was sold to the WWE and the fans salivated in anticipation of the potential match-ups. The one everybody wanted to see was Hulk Hogan vs The Rock
The NWO invades the WWE
Hollywood Hogan and his New World Order buddies Kevin Nash & Scott Hall entered the WWF at the No Way Out PPV on February 17, 2002. The next night on Monday Night RAW, Hulk Hogan and the Rock shared the same ring in a magical moment. Both men talked smack at each other for a while and decided to fight each other at WrestleMania. After shaking the Rock's hand, Hogan & his NWO buddies beat up The Rock. When the ambulance came to take the Rock to the hospital, the NWO commandeered the ambulance and trapped the Rock inside. They then ran the ambulance over with the front of an 18 wheeler truck.
WrestleMania X8 3/17/02
Over 60,000 fans jammed the Skydome in Toronto to see this epic battle. Even though Hulk was a bad guy, the fans of the WWF still remembered their hero & the crowd was mixed as to the who they were going to support. Every time they touched each other the crowd went crazy and the flashbulbs were blinding. However, something strange happened during the match. The fans started to really get behind Hogan and were booing The Rock unmercifully whenever he hit Hogan. After the Rock won, he and Hogan shook hands much to the fans delight.
The good guy Hulk Hogan was back and the fans were giving him ovations the likes that had never been seen in the business. He ditched the black and white colors of Hollywood Hogan and replaced them with the yellow & red all the WWE fans loved. Both men would leave the WWE shortly after to pursue other career opportunities. While this feud was very short, the memories and feelings the fans experienced make it unforgettable.
Part 2 - Easily Forgettable
As is the case in wrestling, when something works once, the promoters try to recreate the magic. They met once again at No Way Out 2003 on February 23, 2003. This time The Rock was a bad guy working for the evil Vince McMahon. The Rock cheated to win this match that was used to lead to a WrestleMania match between Hulk Hogan and Vince McMahon.