Signing with the WWE in 2007, nobody could have predicted the impact these two inexperienced twins would have on the company. Once they were called to the main roster, many believed they would quickly fade away. When they left in 2012, those affirmations came true and nobody could have predicted what would happen next.
With the WWE wanting to make the jump into reality TV with a Diva based show, Nikki and Brie were welcomed back into the company. This time, the duo thrived both as reality stars and WWE Superstars. Brie feuded with Stephanie McMahon while Nikki held the Divas Title for a record breaking 301 days. They shattered the expectations and continue to thrive nowadays with their own reality series, Total Bellas.
Despite all the success, there has been plenty of hate shown towards the twins. Although, it should be noted, that there has been much more love sent their way than hate throughout their careers. In this article, we feature both sides of the coin with nine wrestlers that love The Bella Twins and six that hate them. Like always, be sure to share the article with a friend and let us know your thoughts on The Bellas. Enjoy!
15 Love: Bret Hart
Returning to the WWE in 2013 after a brief hiatus, Nikki seemed like a different Superstar, both in terms of her charisma and inside of the squared circle. All of a sudden, Nikki was a fierce competitor in the ring that oozed confidence outside of it. Many began to take note of her improvements; as PWI (Pr Wrestling Illustrated) named Nikki the number top rated female for 2015. Even Rolling Stone named Nikki the Diva of the Year for 2015, but the biggest praise came from a former legend.
Surprisingly, Bret "The Hitman" Hart tweeted about his love for Nikki in late December, claiming to be a fan of her work. Hart even posted a prior picture of the two taken backstage. Bella responded to the compliment and acknowledged how honored she was to receive such praise from The Hitman. This relationship is one of the least expected on the list.
14 Hate: Tony Atlas
Another odd WWE Hall of Famer to make the list, Tony Atlas dished some hate on The Bella Twins during a shoot interview, something wrestling stars typically do after their time in the limelight is up.
Atlas may have gone a little too far in his testimonial, claiming The Bella Twins got it on in a hot tub while completely nude. He even went as far as to say that the two were urinating on others. Theodore Long confirmed the hot tub story, claiming he was there for it, but denied Atlas’ bizarre allegations of the two “wasting” on others. It should be noted that Atlas has a weird history of antics behind the scenes and of making up crazy stories. With that being said, we believe The Bellas aren’t taking Tony’s heat too seriously.
13 Love: Dolph Ziggler
Back in Nikki and Dolph’s OVW days down in development, the two dated for a little while and were quite fond of one another. With Dolph being notoriously known as a player, the relationship ended. Both would get called up to the main roster and enjoy their individual success. Despite the break up, the two remain on amicable terms as documented on shows like Total Divas. Dolph is usually around the Divas and tends to be more playful when around Nikki, though he also enjoys a decent relationship with sister Brie.
Nowadays, the two have officially moved, on but remain friends as we just discussed. Nikki is happily dating John Cena while Dolph continues to live the single life, although he’s been recently linked to a couple of Divas, including Dana Brooke.
12 Hate: Maria Kanellis
The heat between these three began a while ago. According to Kanellis, trouble started one night at a club when she and Dolph were amicably dancing. Apparently, Nikki was having none of it and tapped the two saying “what are you doing, he’s my man!”
That was just the beginning of the problems and things would reach a new low when Kanellis blamed The Bella Twins for not getting a contract offer from the WWE, claiming the duo sabotaged her. Maria took her hatred online via several shoot interviews and even on her Twitter account. Both Bellas tried to squash the beef by calling Maria, but she was having none of it. Thankfully, it seems like the heat has calmed down as Maria wished the twins well and claimed she wants to move passed it.
11 Love: Billy Graham
Another odd WWE Hall of Famer you wouldn’t expect on a list of Superstars that love The Bellas, Superstar Billy Graham discussed his love for The Bellas during a shoot interview. Graham met the twins at an autograph signing and claimed he really bonded with the twins, despite only meeting them for the first time. Graham even posed for pictures alongside the beauties. Graham concluded the shoot by discussing how grateful he was for his friendship with the twins and how thankful he was for the experience alongside the duo, who were still just getting started at that point.
Say what you must about The Bellas, but they get quite the reaction from WWE alums. Who would have predicted that the likes of Billy Graham and Bret Hart would be big fans of the twins both on and off screen?
10 Love: John Laurinaitis
A lot of the heat towards The Bellas comes from their connections in the business. Not only are the two twins aligned with the two biggest stars in the WWE (Daniel Brayn & John Cena), but even their step-father, John Laurinaitis, is a long time WWE employee, who recently married their mother back in 2016.
So, obviously, John is a fan of the twins and the duo likely have more of a pull behind the scenes because of John and his connection to Vince. On a total side note, it's pretty disturbing to think that the two worked a kind of seductive angle at one point, where The Bellas were pretty flirtatious with their future step-dad. Sounds like a disturbing low budget adult film, doesn’t it?
9 Hate: Kelly Kelly
While The Bella Twins were struggling to find an identity in the WWE, Kelly Kelly was thriving as the Divas Champion. She would depart due to injury, although it was later revealed that she wanted to try her hand at acting and modelling.
In 2013, Kelly was re-contacted by the WWE for a future position as the company planned on hiring several former Divas for their new Total Divas reality show. Once again, according to the rumor mill, Kelly didn't get the opportunity because of The Bellas. According to Maria Kanellis, The Bellas took away the opportunity from not only herself, but Kelly as well.
Today, Kelly is friendly again with the WWE and it appears that she’ll be signing autographs during the WrestleMania fan greeting day. She stated that she's interested in returning full-time, but it’ll be interesting to see what the WWE makes of it. We can assume if Nikki’s still around, the Divas locker room might be a little more tense with the two in it.
8 Love: Paige
Paige arguably helped put Nikki Bella on the map when the two feuded against one another. The rivalry really cemented Nikki’s championship run, along with her brutal heel work, as she would insult Paige in various segments. Off-screen, however, as documented on Total Divas, the three share a great friendship. Although they’ve gotten into some heated debates in the past, the sides always seem to make up, no matter what problems they face.
A clear indication of how comfortable the sides are with one another was well documented on an episode of Total Divas when Brie went all out with Paige and by all out, we mean all out with the drinks. The two tore up a local bar as Brie went into Brie Mode alongside her companion, Paige. The two took countless shots together and it ended up being a night Brie likely forgot about the next day.
7 Love: Alicia Fox
A part of the WWE since 2006, Alicia Fox continues to be a valued employee, remaining as an experience hand on the roster, along with her appearances on Total Divas. Although the bond between these three likely tightened while together on-screen in the Bella stable, the three actually first met back in 2007 while in development. As the twins were entering the business, Alicia was in her second year. The three bonded down in FCW for a short while.
Over a decade later, it's incredible to think that the three remain close and that Nikki and Alicia are still employed by the WWE, even though they are on different brands. With so much experience together, they share quite the bond and love for one another away from the camera.
6 Hate: Maryse
The picture you see above is from an episode of Total Divas that saw Maryse confront Brie, proving the rumors to be true about heat between the two sides. According to Maryse, she blasted Brie for taking the opportunity away from her regarding a possible WWE return. Like we mentioned earlier with Maria and Kelly Kelly, Maryse was also contacted by the WWE for a possible return, although it was believed that The Bellas sabotaged it.
Brie was having none of the rant, claiming that Maryse was jealous that she was finally getting more of an opportunity. Not surprisingly, the WWE has used this heat on-screen as the Canadian beauty is currently feuding with Nikki Bella over on SmackDown Live. The feud is set to culminate at WrestleMania in a tag match featuring Nikki and her boyfriend John Cena against Maryse and The Miz.
5 Love/Hate: Eva Marie
Eva has been quite the polarizing figure, both behind the scenes and inside the squared circle. She ruffled a couple of feathers backstage when she chose to skip out on NXT training and, instead, opt for private sessions with The Brian Kendrick. It caused major heat and she only made things worse with an Instagram post that called the locker room a bunch of sheep. It created big tension between Eva and The Bellas, so much so that it led to numerous verbal altercations, as documented on Total Divas.
In this case, “girls will be girls.” Despite the tension, both sides were able to work on their prior beef and stay friends. It remains to be seen when, and if, Eva will return to a WWE ring at this point. With projects in Hollywood, many believe we’ve seen the last of Marie.
4 Hate: Mickie James
It all came crashing down for Mickie James during her first WWE stint. While dating Spirit Squad member Kenny, James was hooking up with WWE mega star John Cena behind the scenes. This caused some tension and, eventually, Kenny was shipped off to Raw where he saw his career go down the drain. As for Mickie, things didn’t go well for her either. According to the rumor mill, James was infuriated that Cena wouldn’t date her and it led to her demise as well. By 2010, she was gone from the WWE, only to finally return in late 2016.
With Nikki and John now together, you can bet things were a little awkward when James returned to TV, although she claimed the beef was done with.
3 Love: Natalya
Entering the WWE at the same time, both sides joined developmental in 2007. The Bellas were new to the industry, while Natalya already had a wealth of experience, starting on the indie scene way back in 2000. At that point, she already had seven years of experience while The Bellas had absolutely none.
They would enjoy a unique relationship, although they were initially polar opposites, as the three would help each other out in areas where they lacked experience. Natalya aided the two on the wrestling side of things, while the twins aided Natalya with the glitz and glamour aspect of the WWE. It seems like both did a great job as The Bellas improved dramatically while Natalya looks better than ever at the age of 34.
2 Hate: AJ Lee
Dave Meltzer has confirmed the heat between the two sides. According to the wrestling columnist, the three did not get along and AJ was usually a loner backstage, refusing to stay with any of the Divas, especially The Bellas. Things reached a boiling point when Lee cut a promo on the twins for only returning to the company for a reality show. Naturally, Nikki took exception to the promo.
Bella fired back, claiming the allegations were totally false and Nikki was upset she didn’t get a chance to answer back on-air. A lack of rebuttal caused big time heat with The Bellas and the fans for a little while. Interestingly, Lee would leave the WWE and Nikki would break her Divas Championship record reign.
1 Love: Vince McMahon
Without a doubt, Vince McMahon is a huge fan of the twins. The boss loves getting the company exposure in the world of entertainment and The Bellas have thrived in that respect, as the twins have become reality television stars, dominating the E! Network with Total Divas. The WWE was so happy with their contributions to the show that they decided to invest into their own spinoff, Total Bellas, which has also been a success thus far.
Along with that, they're a huge hit on social media with an abundance of followers. Looking back at Vince’s decision to bring them back in 2013, there’s absolutely no doubt that he’s not regretting the decision, as the twins have been absolute money since returning, while exposing the WWE on other platforms.