There is no wrestler today, and maybe ever, who is more polarizing than John Cena. The very mention of his name brings evokes contrasting opinions among young wrestling fans, military personnel and women supporting Cena through thick and through thin. On the other hand, the majority of the male demographic who is above the age of, let’s say thirteen (i.e. not a child), feels the Cena character is repetitive, stale and too predictable.
Regardless of what side of the argument you fall on, what is undeniable is that Cena is going to go down as one of the greatest WWE superstars of all time — if not the greatest. He is a 15-time World Champion who has been the face of the company for over a decade now. But with success comes envy, and Cena has accumulated his fair share of detractors throughout his years in the company.
Here, we take a look at 15 wrestlers who just don’t like John Cena.
15. The Rock
The relationship between the two is much more cordial today than it was when The Rock returned for his feud with Cena for WrestleMania XXVIII. In a 2011 interview with Muscle and Fitness, The Rock opened up on his relationship with Cena when he decided to come back. The Great One told Muscle and Fitness, “John had said some things in an interview that I took exception [in essence, that The Rock cared only about being an actor not about wrestling or WWE fans]. He felt they were okay, I felt that they weren’t okay. I also laughed it off years ago but it wasn’t until I came back and realized that the marquee match-up was going to be between he and I that I would take that edge that we had—and let’s use it. So, we don’t have to hang out, we don’t have to be best friends, we won’t be friends at all.” The beef between the two has since settled and the two have complimented each other on their successes inside and outside of the ring on multiple occasions.
14. Chavo Guerrero
The nephew of the late great Eddie Guerrero, Chavo Guerrero has slammed Cena time in and time out due to him not believing that Cena possesses adequate, let alone respectable wrestling skills. In a 2013 interview with Fox News Latino Guerro said of Cena, “If he can’t wrestle, then he can’t wrestle, you know? Very, very few and far between do we get a Triple H or a Rey Mysterio, a Randy Orton. That doesn’t happen too much anymore. It’s very few and far between. You can tell who’s making John Cena look good.” Guerrero also said if Cena ever surpasses Ric Flair’s record of sixteen World Championships that he would stop watching the product all together. Chavo, no one is going to lose sleep over you not watching the product, buddy.
13. Mr. Kennedy
Mr. Kennedy was let go by the WWE when Randy Orton had complained to the man who brought us people power, John Laurinaitis and Vince McMahon. Orton’s reasoning had to do with Kennedy executing a maneuver in which Orton landed on his neck. As a result, the majority of Kennedy’s firing has led his supporters to blame Orton solely for Kennedy’s release. However, if you ask Kennedy, he believes that Orton wasn’t the only man that had a hand in his release. Rather, he believes Cena lent a helping hand. Kennedy said in an interview with WrestlingInc in November of 2016, “and I think Cena had a hand in that too. Like, Cena helped out, and he said, ‘hey, we need to go to Vince.’ I didn’t get along with him too well.”
12. Brock Lesnar
When Cena and Lesnar both got their starts in the WWE, the two were looked at as promising prospects for the company for years to come; Brock wasn’t a fan of Cena atht eh time, though. According to PWTorch.Com, “Lesnar did not get along with John Cena. Stories from behind the scenes say that Lesnar was not a fan of a young, up and coming Cena. One source actually stated, Brock absolutely positively hated and detested John Cena!” Brock and Cena were both in their early twenties when Lesnar apparently “hated and detested” Cena. Since Lesnar’s return there hasn’t been such reported resentment towards Cena. However, Lesnar was quite angry when Cena wasn’t stretchered out (as anticipated) after their 2012 matchup at Extreme Rules.
It’s often said that the truth comes out when you’re drunk. In an interview with MLW’s Konnan Show, Carlito recalled a drunken altercation between himself and Cena. In the interview Carlito said, “I actually had a fight with Cena. I forget where it was, but we got into a fight. A drunken fist fight. He told me I wasn’t applying myself. He said I should be at a higher level. I didn’t punch him because I’m not going to punch the face of the company. It was more like a drunken fight. I don’t think we were out to hurt each other. I was just defending myself, but Cena, he’s strong as hell.” To Carlito’s credit he would go on to add that Cena isn’t one to hold wrestlers rather down and is one that wants to see them succeed. However, for Carlito to retaliate after being criticized for “not applying himself” there’s likely some sort of dislike from Carlito for Cena.
10. Tyler Reks
Reks once had a finisher called the Burning Hammer that was similar to Cena’s Attitude Adjustment finisher. Cena had asked Reks to replace his finisher, however, Reks had thought Cena was joking. Cena confronted Reks again and Reks detailed the conversation in an interview with WrestlingInc. Reks states Cena said, “I thought I told you to get a new finisher.’ I said, ‘yeah, I thought you were joking John. We hit it wrong last night. I’m really sorry.’ He started yelling at me asking who gave me permission to use that. He belittled me, called me an idiot, and asked me if I enjoyed working here. I told him of course I do. He told me, ‘find another finisher or you’re fired.’ I was humiliated, I was a full-grown man, why can’t we talk about this like human beings?” Cena clearly ripped Reks another one.
The Animal’s most recent run in WWE can largely be characterized as a colossal failure. The WWE’s hope to push him as a babyface failed the minute his music hit. Crowds were unwilling to see the WrestleMania XXX main event with him and Randy Orton, so Daniel Bryan had to be inserted to please the fans. Batista, in a 2016 interview with WrestlingInc, talks about his run and takes some not so subtle shots regarding Cena in the interview. Batista said, “I didn’t want to sell them cheap t-shirts. I couldn’t care less if they booed me or cheered me as long as I gave them a good match and they were happy with the match. I just wanted them to be entertained. I didn’t need the accolades. I don’t think people will ever f***ing get that. I didn’t come out with 25 f***ing wristbands and a different t-shirt every week that I was trying to shove down their Goddamn throats. People will never appreciate that just because I really love the business.” It doesn’t take a genius to realize that Batista is speaking about Cena here.
8. Alex Riley
Riley hasn’t spoken out about his dislike for John Cena, but as Tyler Reks tells it, Cena wasn’t a fan of Riley. In a 2015 Reddit Ask Me Anything, Reks says of Cena, “there is truth that there was some sort of unknown, unreasonable heat between Riley and Cena. To the point where everyone on the roster thought that Cena was treating him in a way that was totally uncalled for. No one approached Cena about it, but the entire locker room was on Riley’s side, a lot of condolences, and this is ‘ridiculous, bro,’ and it was every freakin’ day. Cena thought Riley did something wrong every single day.” If Reks comments are to be believed (and it looks like he has plenty of backing with the “entire locker room” as he says), Reks can’t be one who thinks highly of Cena.
7. Scotty Riggs
Scotty Riggs may not be the most renown name to dislike John Cena, but his opinion of Cena is one many fans of WWE would cosign in a heartbeat. The Undisputed Wrestling Show interviewed Riggs in 2014 and Riggs said the following about Cena, “every single match is the same, and it is sickening. Five simple moves every match. When it is time for Cena’s comeback it is the same moves, boom, boom, boom. That does not suspend any disbelief. That is what wrestlers are supposed to do, have the craft to anywhere in the match a finish can come up.” Cena has been chided by the IWC on multiple occasions for possessing a move set that has been labeled the “five moves of doom.” Riggs comments hear are gospel to Cena detractors and even Cena’s staunchest supporters would likely see some truth in Riggs comments.
6. Mickie James
James and Cena had engaged in an affair when James was involved with Kenny Dykstra and Cena was involved with his long time girlfriend Elizabeth Huberdeau. James was hoping her and Cena would escalate to something more official. Cena wasn’t interested and as Dykstra tells it, James was devastated. Dykstra claims James then went crazy and eventually got fired because of her reaction to Cena not wanting to date her. When asked about her relationships with both Cena and Dykstra in reference to who was more of a gentleman, James replied, “I don’t like to talk about my personal life. Those are little snide comments that people think are clever. You’re not funny.” James has gone on to marry the former Magnus of TNA while Cena currently dates Nikki Bella. James may not have found romance with Cena but at least she found it with someone els.e
5. Wade Barrett
In a 2014 interview with DNA India, Barrett didn’t hold back when referencing Cena. Barrett said, “he has been the face for ten years, and he’s really good at what he does. But everyone knows that I don’t like John Cena, and he doesn’t like me either. You’re right, he does get booed by a lot of fans, lot of people don’t like him. But he sells a lot more t-shirts and other merchandise than anyone else. So there are a lot of people out there who like him too. Either way everyone has an opinion about him, I respect that. Personally I don’t like him and he doesn’t like me, we are not friends.” Credit to Barrett for recognizing Cena’s worth to the WWE and credit to Barrett for not sugarcoating how he felt regarding Cena.
4. Chris Masters
The Masterpiece portrayed a narcissistic gimmick that seemed to have potential when he debuted. Many likely don’t remember that he was involved in a program with Cena in 2005. Masters didn’t have anything disparaging to say about Cena’s character, but he clearly wasn’t all too fond of working with him. In a 2012 interview with Inside the Ropes, Masters said the following regarding working with Cena, “that guy had some heavy fists. Carlito and I used to joke around that in tag matches with Cena and HBK, we would literally rush to get to Shawn Michaels, because he wasn’t as heavy with hands and the other guy would be stuck with Cena and you’d be potato’ing each other left and right. I remember at the Elimination Chamber I felt like I was in a real shoot fight. It’s not that he’s bad, he just gets really fired up and he’s got big hands, he doesn’t realize his own strength.” Masters just didn’t like being in the ring with Cena.
3. Randy Orton
In 2002, the historic OVW class of Batista, John Cena, Brock Lesnar and Randy Orton all made their debuts on WWE’s main roster. Batista and Lesnar have gone and come as the former has dabbled in a movie career and the latter has spent time within the UFC ranks. Cena and Orton haven’t experienced long hiatuses like the “Animal” and the “Beast Incarnate.” However, Orton has never truly surpassed Cena as the company’s face; he has always been number two. Orton will and has taken subtle shots at Cena in the past. In August of 2014 Orton responded to a Twitter user who had asked him when WWE would be releasing RKO outta nowhere t-shirts. Orton could’ve given the questioner a time frame, instead he responded with, “when they make room for something other than Cena merch.” Classy move, Randall.
2. Kenny Dykstra
The Spirit Squad’s headman, Kenny Dykstra has claimed to not have any ill will towards John Cena. However, Dykstra was once engaged to Mickie James and Cena and James are said to have hooked up on numerous occasions. Mr. Dykstra, where there’s smoke there’s fire and if you didn’t have a problem with Cena you wouldn’t talk about him negatively. In a June 2012 interview Dykstra said the following, “Cena was messing with Mickie James so I got moved to Smackdown so they could further mess. I jobbed, got fired. When James got crazy because he wouldn’t date her, she then got fired. Weird biz huh? She got title, on TV show while with him. Serves her well though.” Dykstra points at him getting moved over to Smackdown and eventually fired as a result of Cena and James romance. It doesn’t take a genius to realize that there’s heat between Dykstra and Cena.
1. CM Punk
When CM Punk delivered his infamous “pipe bomb” promo many fans were unable to decipher what was a work and what was truthful. Punk’s frustrations were on full display and his opinion of Cena was as well. Punk let loose saying, “I don’t hate you, John. I don’t even dislike you. I do like you. I like you a hell of a lot more than I like most people in the back. I hate this idea that you’re the best. Because you’re not. I’m the best. I’m the best in the world. There’s one thing you’re better at than I am and that’s kissing Vince McMahon’s ass.” Punk’s beef with Cena stems from the fact that he and other wrestlers were always overlooked because of Cena. Outside of the WWE Punk seems to have no problem with Cena, inside of it is a different story.