Sounds like The Rock won’t be at WrestleMania… unless he is

A confluence of signs this week led a lot of us to believe Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson would be making his return to WWE in the next few weeks.

For more than a year, it’s been an open secret the company was hoping to have him for a WrestleMania 39 program with Roman Reigns. The announcement next Monday’s Raw XXX would feature multiple generations of wrestling’s Samoan Dynasty “acknowledging” Reigns, right before a supposedly surprise-filled Royal Rumble, seemed to give them a couple logical opportunities to start a Roman vs. Rock angle.

But it may not be happening. Unless that’s just what they want us to think…

In the new Wrestling Observer Newsletter, Dave Meltzer writes:

We were told that unless he changes his mind in the next few days, since a deadline for Mania plans is coming, that he’s indicated he won’t have time to get into the kind of shape he feels he needs to be in to do a main event match with Roman Reigns, but kept the door open for something in the future.

That comes with more caveats than just that open door to the future, though. Caveats like:

Of course it is a possibility that it’s something being kept a secret from everyone.

… and …

I don’t know that he’s officially turned it down, but the only indication is that it was considered less likely than a few months ago.

As for Rock’s schedule, the most pressing thing on it is next month’s impending launch of the XFL. The third attempt to get this particular spring football league off the ground will be relying heavily on co-owner Johnson to promote it. Combining that with whatever demands his acting career and businesses ranging from Seven Bucks Productions to tequila & energy drinks place on him, and it’s conceivable he really doesn’t have time to shake off a decade of ring rust (sorry, we’re not counting that six second classic against Erick Rowan at WrestleMania 32).

But could he squeeze in a few appearances to have a role in The Bloodline story for ‘Mania season? Don’t rule it out.