The rivalry between The Rock and Triple H would see them mix it up many times throughout their WWE careers. Both journeys would essentially parallel each other in terms of their progression. Rock and Triple H were each thriving mid-carders around the same time leading their respective fashions of the Nation of Domination and D-Generation X. Their main event pushes came around the same time as well to give WWE two new top superstars.
We will look back at the best and worst instances of Rock and Triple H facing off. The matches range from singles bouts to triple threats to multi-person team matches all involving the two main rivals. Find out just which matches you must watch back, and which ones deserve to be skipped. These are the five best and five worst matches between Triple H and The Rock.
10 Best: Triple H vs The Rock - Iron Man match (Judgment Day 2000)
The rivalry of Triple H vs The Rock carried WWE in the main event picture around 2000 when Steve Austin was out recovering from an injury. Rock proved he could thrive as the face of the company and Triple H was easily able to make his spot as the top heel a huge hit.
Judgment Day 2000 saw the continue with the main event of an Iron Man match. The bout saw them exchanging many falls with a controversial ending. Undertaker made a return attacking the McMahon family and hitting Triple H with a chokeslam. Unfortunately, guest referee Michaels had to call the DQ giving Triple H the win.
9 Worst: Triple H vs The Rock vs Mick Foley vs Big Show (WrestleMania 16)
The main event of WrestleMania 16 may have made more sense of Triple H and The Rock had another singles match. Instead, WWE added Mick Foley and Big Show to the match making it a fatal four-way with each wrestler represented by a McMahon family member.
Triple H won the match and retained the title when Vince turned on Rock to align with his daughter and son in law. The match wasn’t the worst in the world, but it clearly lacked the importance of a WrestleMania main event given the talent involved.
8 Best: Triple H vs The Rock (Smackdown: August 26, 1999)
The second-ever episode of Smackdown and the first episode to start the show’s time slot featured a huge main event. Triple H defended the WWE Championship against The Rock with Shawn Michaels as the special guest referee.
The match was quite entertaining with a memorable finish putting it over the top. Despite promising to call the match right down the middle, Michaels interrupted Rock’s People Elbow with a Sweet Chin Music superkick out of nowhere. Triple H retained the title thanks to the help of his best friend.
7 Worst: Triple H and Trish Stratus vs The Rock and Lita (Raw: July 31, 2000)
The mixed tag team match between four iconic performers would unfortunately be remembered for the bad comedy involved. A prior segment in the night featured Triple H helping Trish Stratus with wrestling moves which infuriated Stephanie McMahon.
The main event of the July 31, 2000 Raw saw The Rock and Lita score the win as the faces defeating Triple H and Stratus. It was done booked in the storyline to create tension between Triple H and Stephanie. However, the lack of experience for Trish and Lita at the time ended the match in disappointment.
6 Best: Triple H vs The Rock vs Kurt Angle (Summerslam 2000)
A few new dynamics would get added to the rivalry of The Rock vs Triple H heading into the main event of Summerslam 2000. Kurt Angle, Triple H and Stephanie McMahon were involved in a love triangle storyline as the two heels challenged Rock for the WWE Championship at Summerslam.
All three men delivered strong performances on the second biggest event of the year. The storytelling put this match over the top as the distractions for Angle and Triple H ultimately worked in Rock’s favor to overcome the two top villains.
5 Worst: Triple H vs The Rock vs Brock Lesnar (Global Warning 2002)
The various WWE exclusive PPVs overseas would see a few major matches booked on the card. Triple H facing off against Undisputed Champion The Rock and Brock Lesnar in a triple threat match would main event the Global Warning event in Australia.
Despite the dream match putting three top tier icons in the ring together, it was viewed as quite the average match. The secondary PPVs outside of North America provided the middle ground between a PPV and house show. Fans would get disappointed by the lack of wild twists in the triple threat match.
4 Best: Triple H vs The Rock - Ladder match (Summerslam 1998)
The Intercontinental Championship was the first prize to cause issues between The Rock and Triple H. Everyone remembers them going to war with each other for the WWE Championship, but the IC Title was just as important in 1998 when both men wanted to prove their star power.
Summerslam 1998 featured Rock and Triple H stealing the show in a Ladder match. Most wrestlers viewed it as a big deal to have a classic match in MSG on PPV. Rock and Triple H did just that with Triple H scoring the victory as the new IC Champion.
3 Worst: Triple H vs The Rock - Brahma Bull Strap match (Smackdown: September 23, 1999)
The September 23, 1999 edition of Smackdown featured Triple H having to win three out of five matches in various stipulation matches favoring his opponents. Triple H’s fifth and deciding match was against The Rock in a Brahma Bull Strap match.
Davey Boy Smith was slotted as the special guest referee leading to a lackluster heel turn. Smith attacked The Rock costing him the match and allowing Triple H to win his series for the night. This is one Rock/Triple H match no one ever talks about.
2 Best: Triple H vs The Rock (Backlash 2000)
The match between Triple H and The Rock at Backlash 2000 would have been the ideal choice for the WrestleMania 16 main event instead of the fatal four-way. Triple H had all the odds stacked in his favor with Shane McMahon as the guest referee and various DX/McMahon family members at ringside.
An injured Steve Austin made a one-night return helping even the odds for Rock to score the win in a classic match. This was the peak of the Rock/Triple H feud with fans celebrating like Rock won the Super Bowl when defeating the hated Triple H.
1 Worst: Triple H vs The Rock vs Big Show (Survivor Series 1999)
The Survivor Series 1999 main event was originally viewed as a dream match of Triple H defending the WWE Championship against The Rock and Steve Austin in a triple threat. Austin was taking time off following this show to get neck surgery and WWE booked him to get run over by a car.
With Austin removed from the match, Big Show replaced him in the triple threat main event. The inexperience of Big Show was still showing as this match was nothing special. Big Show winning the title didn’t even come off as a star-making moment despite defeating two icons.