Mike Chioda: John Cena Had A Problem Losing To The Rock at WWE WrestleMania 28
"Money is not even the issue. It becomes an ego thing and a pride thing."
Former WWE referee Mike Chioda says John Cena had 'a little bit of a problem' with having to put The Rock over in their WWE WrestleMania 28 main event.
Cena and The Rock made their marquee 'Mania match official a year before the event itself before The Great One pinned The 16-time WWE Champion at the 2012 show in Miami, Florida, a contest in which Chioda was the assigned official.
The 54-year-old revealed that it was The Rock himself that asked for Chioda to referee his match with Cena and, being around the two ahead of their main event, he could feel the tension between the duo.
The former WWE official said that Cena was not thrilled with doing the job for Rock in their first meet, which he speculated was down to his position as the guy who had carried the company for much of the previous decade.
Speaking on the Monday Mailbag, Chioda said: "I've always admired the Rock over the years in working with him, and then, Rock set me up to be the referee for that match when he came back with Cena. And I was like, awesome.
"Had this match, you know, Rock wanted me to do it and everything, and I think Cena had a little bit of a problem doing the job. Here is Cena, carrying the torch for the last ten years I think at that time, and he was busting him a** day in, day out. And here comes The Rock, back after so many years of being in Hollywood, and he's got to job out to The Rock?
"Well, of course, the show is in Miami. The Rock is a big Hollywood superstar now, and I think there was a little heat there. I think there was a little dissension. But, you've got to go where the money goes. I mean, they put Rock over, and I was happy about that."
Speaking further about the situation, Chioda believed the two superstars were both too proud and neither was ultimately willing to do the job in the WrestleMania 28 match, prior to their second contest for the WWE Championship at WrestleMania 29.
The entire situation, according to the referee, was sure to have made Cena mad with WWE Chairman Vince McMahon, who would have had final say on the winner of the WrestleMania 28 match.
He added: "Here are two guys that were making big money. And that's why, it's not even like, 'Okay, I'm getting big money for this match. I'll do the job.' It becomes about ego and pride. It really does. When it comes down to it, money is not even the issue. It becomes an ego thing and a pride thing.
"Like, 'I've been carrying this business for the last ten years, I should go around him first, then he'll go around me.' 'No, no, Rock's going to go around you first.' I'm sure John was p***ed at Vince."