We have finally received confirmation on a 16-year-old news report.
In conversation during the Royal Rumble 2005 episode of his Grilling JR podcast, Jim Ross revealed that before his contract expired in December 2004, The Rock (Dwayne Johnson) did indeed pitch a WrestleMania match versus Sting.
He adds, "Rock knew in his heart that he could get a match out of Sting, who had been dormant for quite a while, without any problem. Full confidence. I believe that too."
According to the legendary announcer, WWE had been trying to sign Sting since WCW closed its doors in 2001. At the time, there was a belief that he would be happy (having just been paid money owed by Time Warner), healthy, and refreshed.
"We only wanted him for a part-time role, at best, to maximize the investment, and not overuse an asset that had more matches in him than he had left," said Jim Ross.
Ultimately, the match never happened, and Johnson opted not to renew his contract. That said, Jim Ross does not believe one thing has anything to do with the other. Furthermore, responding to the assertion that Vince McMahon was "picking sides" and showing Steve Austin preferential treatment, Ross believes it was a matter of ego. It's not that Rock wasn't a priority, or that there were issues of control, but rather, in his estimation, this was Vince overcompensating and saying "no matter how big you have gotten, I will always run the ship here."
Although the match would have been "cool as hell," JR maintains that The Rock "had a lot of good people in his ear, and look at his future, he made the right call."
Johnson recently spent a day at the Performance Center training with his daughter, and newest WWE recruit, Simone.