A former WWE Superstar has recalled Triple H and The Rock getting into a heated confrontation before The Great One had even made his debut.
Steve Lombardi, better known as the Brooklyn Brawler holds the distinction of being The Rock’s first-ever WWE opponent. The match in question took place on March 10th 1996 WWF Superstars taping, and the would-be World Champion defeated the veteran in Corpus Christi, Texas.
Speaking in a new interview with Bill Apter for Sportskeeda, Lombardi reflected on that famous night, and the tense interaction Rock had with Triple H before he even made it to the ring.
“Hunter walks over, he’s a little skinny guy. He looks like a pirate and he’s like, ‘Did I hear right? This is your very first match?’ And then Rock goes, ‘Yeah.’ ‘You know I’m gonna be the Intercontinental Champion,’ Triple H said to him. Rock cockily, but I don’t think he wanted to be cocky, he said, ‘Oh the same title that Don Morocco had me wear. You’re going to really like it when you wear it.’ Triple H says, ‘Maybe you could take a picture with me with it and buy some ring gear.'”
During the conversation, the Brooklyn Brawler also recalled Mankind’s first interaction with the young star.
“Mankind walked in and Mankind says, ‘I feel real sorry for you because you’re going to win your very first match.’ He goes, ‘What do you mean?’ He goes, ‘If you win your first match, Vince is going to be looking for a reaction. If you lose your first match, Vince ain’t gonna be looking as closely,’ which I don’t think was great advice, but it’s that’s the way it happened.”
Eight months after his first match, The Rock made his televised debut at Survivor Series in Madison Square Garden. While he defeated Triple H to win the Intercontinental Championship the following February.
H/t to Sportskeeda