WWE veteran says there was uncertainty over iconic Hulk Hogan match

Hulk Hogan in the nWo (Credit: WWE)
Hulk Hogan in the nWo (Credit: WWE)
Modified 05 May 2021

Mike Chioda has recalled the uncertainty over the crowd's reaction to Hulk Hogan's classic confrontation against The Rock at WrestleMania X8 in Toronto.

In a recent interview with Michael Morales Torres of Lucha Libre Online, the former WWE referee, who was the third man in the ring for Hulk Hogan vs. The Rock, explained how he and the company had no idea whether the crowd in attendance would be in support of the Immortal One or The People's Champion.

Chioda also said he "marked out" over being involved in such a match, given the names involved and the importance of the match in wrestling history as a whole.

"I marked out! I seriously marked out," said Chioda. "You could probably see, it’s on my Twitter, they had this crowd and I was just standing there. We really didn’t expect which way these people were going to go, in Toronto…. The crowd reaction was just unbelievable. I had chills, I couldn’t even hear myself think, at one point, which is only one of so many times in my career. They were so loud. And then the face off, at the beginning. I’m standing there, I’m thirty something years old at this point, and I’m looking and I’m just marking out, I was like, 'Oh my god, look at me marking out!'"

Chioda continued, explaining how the match acted as a metaphorical passing of the torch, from Hulk Hogan to The Rock.

"It goes with Hogan, with all the phenomenal years we’ve had with Hogan, entertaining the kids and everything, with him on top… To then The Rock taking over and Hogan passing the torch to Rock. Even though Rock took it to Hollywood after that pretty much!"

Hulk Hogan vs. The Rock at WrestleMania X8

Widely regarded as one of the greatest WrestleMania matches of all time, Hulk Hogan vs. The Rock at WrestleMania X8 garnered a massive response from those watching, both in attendance and at home on pay-per-view.

Speaking with Michael Morales Torres, Mike Chioda said he was very appreciative of the chance to be a part of such an iconic match.

"Do I appreciate that match and that spot," said Chioda. "In one of the most memorable matches in professional wrestling history? Yeah, it was awesome to be a part of that match."

In the end, The Rock walked away from WrestleMania X8 as the victor. Mike Chioda worked for WWE for over 30 years, before his release in 2020.

Published 05 May 2021
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