Originally Posted by Mr. Straight Edge
Jealousy, I would imagine.
Here's the deal: we're talking about the biggest star in wrestling history (Hogan), against the biggest star in wrestling at the time and probably the second biggest in history (Austin).
Both refused to do the job because of it. Hogan, because he's Hogan, and Austin because he resented his treatment in WCW when guys like Hogan came in.
The reason Hogan jobbed to The Rock? This is where we veer into the dangerous Rock/Austin territory, but I think it's because Hogan was convinced Rock was outside of their level. Whether that was the case or not (I don't think it was), I think it's what Hogan believed.
There's a clip of Hogan talking about that match, in which he says: "It took him [Rock] from great, to greatness."
Typical Hogan. The Rock was already at that level with him and Austin in terms of stardom; but anyway, it seems to me he saw an opportunity either to job to Austin, a guy on his level, and figure that would have put The Rattlesnake above him.
Jobbing to The Rock meant putting over a guy he considered just below his and Austin's level, and thus he's convinced himself he made The Rock, to some extent.
I think people over analyze this whole thing and just don't use the bottom line as Austin says. STORYLINE WISE if Austin vs. Hogan is booked who goes over? Austin vs. Hogan is a bigger headache booking wise, while Hogan/Rock is easier to deal with. If Vince Mcmahon didn't ask Austin there is a very good reason for it. Hogan/Austin legacy wise is much more hard to deal with because if it is promoted as the match to decide who the best ever is there are multiple problems that would arise.
Now I added to this thread by stating how some radio personalities that actually talk with people in the company stated how Austin turned down the match first. The whole irony of it all is that those radio personalities said Austin most likely turned down the match for the reasons you mentioned that Hogan would try to use the match to get his name back in good graces with the fans around the world. That is EXACTLY what happened with The Rock match.
We are also not looking at the company's long term plans that obviously had Brock Lesnar in the picture with him being the WWF Champion at the end of SummerSlam. So the passing of the torch happened with the old school with Hogan to Rock who in turn passes the torch to Brock Lesnar. Hogan just added to the sizzle by jobbing to Lesnar on television.
Now the argument that some make is that Austin has never acknowledged publicly about being asked to do the match first. The first thing you have to ask is what would the purpose of bringing that subject up would do if in fact Austin was the one who didn't want the match?
History shows that it is indeed Steve Austin who didn't want anything to do with a Hogan/Austin match. As for Austin saying retrospectively that him and Hogan should have been the match at WM 18 still doesn't negate the possibility that he didn't want to do the match AT THAT TIME. Austin saying it years later on a dvd is quite possibly done for the obvious historical glare of why Hogan/Austin never went down as it was obvious to A LOT of people why Hogan/Austin wasn't done when all logical wrestling sense states Hogan/Austin would be the obvious choice.
If Austin denied dropping the title to HHH why is it a stretch that is is possible that we don't know that Austin possibly denied fans of Hogan/Austin. The argument of Austin never admitting it is akin to Shawn Michaels never admitting he was in on the Montreal Screwjob which he denied for over a decade until the company was in good graces with Bret Hart again.
What good could come out of the company or the participants admitting politics caused Hogan/Austin from happening? There is no good in it that's why. I'm not saying one way or the other, but I'm not going to completely believe there was no way in hell that the match was nixed because of Hulk Hogan and Steve Austin's ego either. I think that is being quite naive as both Hogan and Austin are notorious for protecting their brand names.