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Rocky's one Hall of a legend
By TIM BAINES - Ottawa Sun


A young Rocky Johnson and Sky Low Low. Photo by Terry Dart

ORLANDO, Fla. -- Sure, Rocky Johnson is The Rock's dad, but he's a Hall-of-Famer in his own right.

Tonight, along with his former father-in-law Peter Maivia, Ric Flair, Jack Brisco, Gerald Brisco, Mae Young, Eddie Graham and Gordon Solie, Johnson -- the 63-year-old legend who wrestled as Soulman and Sweet Ebony Diamond -- will be inducted into the WWE Hall of Fame.

Half of the first African-American world tag-team champs, along with Tony Atlas, Johnson is a gentleman with an incredible sense of humour. Born in Nova Scotia, he also spent time in Toronto.

Asked if he knew his son would make it big, Johnson said: "When he was 11 or 12, I bought him a camera and he'd do (pretend) interviews with The Wild Samoans, Hulk Hogan, Jimmy Snuka ... he'd play it back on the VCR and if he didn't like it, he'd (film) it again.

"I tried to discourage him from wrestling. Finally, he came back (after being cut by the Calgary Stampeders) and said he had to talk to me. I thought, 'Great, he's got some girl pregnant.' But he said to me that he didn't want to play football anymore. Then he got into wrestling."

So, Rocky, what do you think of the use of painkillers and steroids in wrestling?

"When I wrestled, I took stuff they didn't even have names for. You think Barry Bonds was the first one to take steroids?"

So, Rocky, in a legitimate fight, would Floyd Mayweather have a chance against The Big Show?

"Floyd Mayweather couldn't knock out The Big Show if he hit him 22 times."

AROUND THE RING

Elijah Burke won the THQ Smackdown vs. RAW video game challenge, beating Kofi Kingston in the final.

RELATED LINKS

  • Rocky Johnson Career Record
  • August 20, 2003: Rocky Johnson: The unknown WWE trainer
  • More on WrestleMania 24