The real life romantic relationships in professional wrestling are sometimes more bizarre than the ones on television. Both scripted and legitimate relationships have been huge stories in wrestling for many years. WWE television has created quite a few relationships for the on-screen product. While most ended up making sense like Randy Savage and Miss Elizabeth or Triple H and Stephanie McMahon, quite a few were bizarre choices. Romances like Dusty Rhodes and Sapphire or Teddy Long and Aksana come to mind. There were even more odd couples being discussed in WWE despite never coming to fruition.
We will look at the rumored plans of surprising choices for couples that almost became official on WWE television. Another odd element is the rumored relationships behind the scenes that make no sense. These romances are ones that seem too ridiculous to have any truth behind it, but the reports indicate they may have been true. Both instances of relationships in wrestling will leave you shocked and dismayed at what may have been and what could have been. Find out the backstory behind these fascinating examples of wild wrestling relationships. These are eight odd wrestling romances that almost took place on WWE television along with seven that were rumored to take place in real life.
15 Almost on-screen: RVD and Stephanie McMahon
Bruce Prichard recently revealed a lot of backstage information regarding the WWE career of Rob Van Dam. Following the end of ECW, Van Dam made the jump to WWE during the invasion angle of WCW and ECW wrestlers attempting to take over WWE. The storyline was viewed as a huge flop with most of the new wrestlers being viewed as lower tier acts. RVD was one of a handful of new talent to get over.
Fans loved Van Dam and WWE went forward by pushing him more than his ECW peers. There was one interesting idea for his character.
Vince McMahon wanted to have his daughter Stephanie McMahon enter a romantic storyline with RVD.
During this time, Triple H was on the shelf recovering from an injury and Stephanie needed a new storyline. It would have helped Van Dam get acclimated into upper level angles given the importance of Stephanie’s character at the time.
There were some rumblings that it would have led to a huge Triple H vs. RVD feud when the former returned to the ring. Van Dam was hesitant about the angle as his wife did not want him to have any on-screen romances. The complaints of RVD to get out of the storyline led to WWE canceling the plans. A handful of segments saw them hint at something blossoming, but it obviously never happened.
14 Real life rumor: Chris Jericho and Kelly Kelly
One bizarre real-life situation of two wrestlers potentially being an item was the combination of Chris Jericho and Kelly Kelly. The 16-year age difference would have made them an odd duo in general, but other circumstances made it a bigger shock.
During his run in the late 2000s, Jericho became part of the rumor mill romance stories when pictures circulated of him with Kelly at a nightclub. The photos showed them dancing close together and making out at one point. These leaked images had fans wondering if Jericho was having a fling with the young women’s wrestler. Nothing ever came out regarding Kelly and Jericho getting involved in a real relationship.
This was a rare instance of Jericho finding his way into a potential personal scandal. Luckily for him, the story faded away quickly. If something like that happened today, the reach of social media would have seen the story become a bigger deal and never fade away. Neither Jericho nor Kelly ever addressed these rumors going forward. Both appear to still be friends today but may have had benefits about a decade ago.
13 Almost on-screen: Dean Ambrose and AJ Lee
WWE considered putting together a controversial storyline for a new romance on-screen. Dean Ambrose and AJ Lee each showed a lot of potential as characters.
There was a plan pitched to put them together in a romantic storyline. A former writer revealed that there would be vignettes of the two wrestlers interacting in a mental asylum while falling in love.
Ambrose and Lee were supposed to become a long-term couple using the mental asylum background as the basis for the characters going forward. WWE always saw the potential of Ambrose and wanted to give him a great introduction before coming up with the idea of The Shield. AJ was also a promising talent with nothing going on at the time.
In her autobiography, Lee revealed she turned down a storyline that would have ridiculed her real-life mental illness issues leading to WWE leaving her off television for quite some time going forward. This was likely the aforementioned romance storyline with Ambrose. Given her family’s background of mental illness, the concept of the asylum segments being used in comedic moments wasn’t something she wanted to do. Both AJ and Dean were better off without this angle as they went on to have great careers.
12 Real life rumor: Paige and Xavier Woods
Paige has been involved in various romantic rumors throughout her career in WWE. The recent relationship with Alberto Del Rio was the most controversial as she seems better off for ending it late last year. However, one potential relationship that is up in the air regards her past with New Day member Xavier Woods. An unfortunate situation for Paige saw her old private romantic tapes leaked online.
Paige and former WWE superstar Brad Maddox were the two main wrestlers involved in these videos. They were an item during their time together in WWE developmental for quite some time and apparently filmed their intimate moments. However, a bigger shock was another person involved in the video that was believed to be Woods.
It was viewed as speculation until The Usos referenced it in their rap battle segment against New Day. Paige confirmed it when revealing in an interview that she felt bad Woods was forced into the scandal. There is speculation that Woods and Paige had a relationship for some time leading to their moment being caught on video. Both are now co-workers on the SmackDown brand with Paige as a General Manager and Woods as a talent on the blue brand.
11 Almost on-screen: Edge and Kristal Marshall
Edge’s relationship with Lita in real life becoming a part of the television show helped get him to the next level as an elite heel. The antics of Edge and Lita helped Edge become the Rated-R Superstar. WWE often pushed the envelope with segments for the couple. Lita has admitted that she hated this chapter of her career and it negatively impacted her life. It led to her choosing to retire at a young age in 2007. WWE wanted to find another romantic partner for Edge moving forward.
SmackDown women’s wrestler Kristal Marshall was selected to be the person involved in this storyline.
The company was doing very little with her, but they believed she had a chance to contribute. Edge reportedly was on board for the new romance. However, Kristal ended up declining this angle due to not wanting to participate in the raunchy segments.
Many people in upper management were upset at Marshall for turning down a major opportunity at a time when she was doing nothing of note. WWE eventually released Kristal shortly after this incident. Both Marshall and her ex-husband Bobby Lashley were out of the company. Lashley has since returned, but Kristal saw her career essentially end due to turning down a romance angle.
10 Real life rumor: Davey Boy Smith and Sunny
Tammy “Sunny” Sytch has been involved in many controversial stories throughout her career. Many of her romantic escapades have been confirmed by other parties such as the time she spent with Shawn Michaels. There have been a few tales shared by other wrestlers in shoot interviews, but Sytch has started to spread rumors about her past when her own interview specials.
A recent interview saw Sunny reference a relationship she had in the 90s that was never made public beforehand. According to Sytch, the late “British Bulldog” Davey Boy Smith and her were and item in the 90s.
Both Sytch and Davey Boy were on the roster during the same time in the mid-90s. However, no rumors or reports ever leaked regarding the two being an item in any way. Sunny claims it happened and made it public decades later.
The daughter of Davey Boy posted a blog trashing Sytch for trying to use her family as pawns in a game to find relevance again. Tammy was arrested again shortly after this interview was filmed to show just how much she has fallen through the years. Regardless, the allegations being made public means this potential backstage romance will be a rumor going forward.
9 Almost on-screen: Cody Rhodes and Kaitlyn
Cody Rhodes is currently one of the biggest stars outside of WWE, but he spent many years in WWE. Despite being on the roster for quite some time, Rhodes didn’t receive many opportunities. Most of his time was spent in the mid-card picture where writers come up with the most bizarre ideas possible for talent. One specific plan would have seen Kaitlyn fall in love with Cody.
This was back when Rhodes had the mustache as part of his character. Kaitlyn made a tweet shortly before this declaring her love of mustaches.
A former writer revealed he came up with the idea to have the face character of Kaitlyn fall madly in love with the heel Rhodes due to finding his mustache irresistible.
It was likely going to be a comedic angle with the two trying to make the audience laugh. Upper management shut down the idea. Kaitlyn and Cody did have a couple of interesting segments, but it never culminated in anything of note. The angle would have given them something to do. However, it would not have led to any noteworthy change improving their careers. Both wrestlers are now outside of WWE trying to move forward in their wrestling journeys.
8 Real life rumor: Alberto Del Rio and Charlotte Flair
Alberto Del Rio entering a relationship with Paige stunned WWE fans. However, it led to another rumor starting about his love life during his most recent stint in WWE. Del Rio dating Paige was confirmed when the couple went public. The other relationship of Alberto didn’t have the same confirmation as rumors indicated he had a very short-term relationship with Charlotte Flair just weeks before he started dating Paige.
This whole back and forth with women made him look like an even bigger jerk than he already was perceived. Charlotte apparently dated Alberto for a few weeks before the two decided it was best to split up according to the dirt sheets.
Neither Flair nor Del Rio ever made public comments regarding their potential relationship. Charlotte and Paige are considered close friends to this day, so it is likely the romance between Flair and Del Rio was not a serious thing. Given the train wreck life of Alberto over the past few years, Charlotte lucked out or her career could have taken a downward spiral due to his presence like Paige’s did.
7 Almost on-screen: The Rock and Trish Stratus
WWE considered a high-profile romantic storyline between two of the biggest names in the company back in 2001. The Rock passed Steve Austin as the most popular star for WWE at the time. Trish Stratus was making waves as the most popular women’s wrestler in many years. Someone backstage came up with the idea to have them interact in a few segments.
Rock initially saved Stratus from the wrath of Vince McMahon as both had feuds with him going at the time. The two would have a couple of backstage segments interacting. At one point, Rock and Trish shared a dramatic kiss in the locker room area to a huge reaction. It was clearly a huge moment meant to make fans ponder the potential of the two being an item going forward.
The writing expected Rock and Trish to become the new top couple in WWE. However, plans changed quickly as the storyline died within a few days. WWE canceled the plans believing Rock needed to stay away from a romantic storyline.
Stratus still thrived on her own as she went on to become top woman in the company for many more years. Things worked out well for Rock as well as he’s now among the biggest stars in the world.
6 Real life rumor: Byron Saxton and Nia Jax
Recent years have seen more WWE relationships in real life become public. Wrestlers used to try to avoid dating within the industry due to advice from management, but that old way of thinking has been thrown out the window. There are more relationships going on right now between WWE employees than any other time in company history, and that isn’t necessarily a bad thing given the lack of scandals compared to other eras.
However, there are still some odd romance rumors that make you shake your head. One rumor to surface over the past year is a potential relationship between Byron Saxton and Nia Jax.
There was an episode of WWE Ride Along with Jax riding with Corey Graves and Tom Phillips. Nia returned a call from Saxton with the speaker getting the entire conversation out there for everyone to listen.
Saxton flirted with Jax in an attempt get her to become his official girlfriend.
It showed that Saxton was clearly trying to enter a romance with Nia and has been for quite some time. Some fan speculation online implied the two were an item for a short time when being spotted hanging out after shows together. We’ll likely never know for sure if Byron and Nia ever officially dated.
5 Almost on-screen: John Cena and Maria Kanellis
WWE considered a few different relationships for John Cena on-screen during the first few years of his rise into the upper echelon of the company. The idea of an on-screen romance will usually help appeal the top star to other demographics of the audience. WWE played around with the idea of Cena entering a relationship with Maria Kanellis back during Cena’s feud with Edge.
While Cena won most of his matches, Edge started to get his number in 2006. Lita being at ringside for Edge often helped him steal the win through nefarious tactics. One episode of Raw featured Maria teaming with Cena to help combat Lita after Lita humiliated her earlier in the show. Cena and Maria picked up the win and shared a kiss backstage in the locker room area.
The kiss was meant to lead to bigger plans of the two potentially becoming a couple on Raw going forward. It would have added another dynamic to Cena’s character and made Maria a bigger part of the show. However, the plans changed as many people in management felt it would have been a poor decision to put Maria in that spot with very little experience at the time. Maria did become a great manager and love interest many years later when uniting with Mike Kanellis-Bennett in ROH and Impact Wrestling.
4 Real life rumor: Michael Hayes and Rosa Mendes
Michael Hayes has been one of the most powerful people in WWE over the past fifteen years or so. WWE originally hired Hayes to be a broadcaster for them thanks to his experience of being a great talker when wrestling as a member of the Freebirds. Things changed as Hayes was moved into a backstage role as one of the producers. Vince McMahon loved the work of Hayes and promoted him quickly.
Hayes has been the top producer for WWE for a long time now and is considered to be extremely high up in the pecking order backstage. That made it bizarre when he was reportedly involved with a member of the roster.
It was believed that Hayes dated the significantly younger Rosa Mendes for many months. Some fans even believed Rosa survived getting fired due to being in a relationship with Hayes.
If the two did indeed date, it ended within the past few years. Mendes’ most recent boyfriend was featured on Total Divas with her as the two had a child together. Recent rumors indicated that Rosa was trying to get hired by Ring of Honor when attending their television tapings. Hayes no longer going to bat for her can see it become a difficult task to get a good spot in the wrestling industry again.
3 Almost on-screen: Stephanie McMahon Pregnancy Debacle
Vince McMahon is responsible for some of the most ridiculous ideas in WWE history. There are countless instances of him having bad ideas that stand out for the worst reasons like Katie Vick or his feud against God. While McMahon is respected as a creative genius for his good ideas paying off, there is a part of him that comes up with things you’d never expect a human to consider.
One of the most outlandish thoughts of Vince came when his daughter Stephanie McMahon was pregnant with her and Triple H’s first child. Vince loved to use his family as characters on the show. It made sense that he wanted to write Stephanie’s pregnancy into the show, but his idea was unbelievable, considering who he wanted to be revealed as the father of Stephanie’s child.
We have seen WWE test the waters with prior angles. Stephanie flat out refused to be a part of such a storyline. She said it was one of the first ideas she turned down instantly. Vince wanting to go the shocking route with an angle involving his daughter would have been among the worst ideas in WWE history if Stephanie didn’t shut it down.
2 Real life rumor: John Cena and Carmella
One of the most stunning romantic rumors in wrestling history recently just surfaced. John Cena breaking up with Nikki Bella shocked the wrestling industry. The power couple was expected to get married this month after getting engaged last year at WrestleMania 33. However, news broke that the couple split up due to differences in their future. Total Bellas is expected to show the moment of the breakup this coming season.
There is a hot rumor making the rounds that Cena is already involved in a new relationship with one of the other members of the Total Divas cast. By process of elimination, fans have realized it would have to be Carmella. The fact that Carmella also recently broke up with her former love interest Big Cass earlier this year makes the timing even more interesting.
Cena having a potential relationship with Carmella has fans wondering. It would be odd for Carmella and Cena to have fallen for each other at some point over the past few weeks since they haven’t been on any of the same shows. Regardless, this is becoming one of the juiciest rumors in recent wrestling memory. If true, it would just lead to more drama for all involved and their exes.
1 Almost on-screen: The Undertaker and Sable
A lesser known backstage story of the Attitude Era featured the writing team coming close to putting together an odd romance. The Undertaker was one of the biggest WWE stars at the time after having a great body of work throughout the 90s. Vince McMahon however wanted to switch things up as he believed Undertaker’s character was growing stale and needed some sort of change.
Vince Russo apparently pitched the idea of Sable being Undertaker’s love interest. It is well known today that Russo was smitten with Sable and desperately wanted her to become a bigger part of the show. WWE considered going forward with Undertaker dating Sable back in 1997. Rumors indicate that WWE Magazine had an article teasing the romance right before it was set to become a reality.
Undertaker’s wife Sara reportedly didn’t like the idea and asked him to turn it down. Given McMahon’s respect for Undertaker, it is understandable why he would take Undertaker’s wishes into account for such a storyline. WWE ended up changing his character up a year or two later when he become the leader of the Ministry of Darkness playing a cult leader character. However, we were very close to Undertaker and Sable becoming a couple on WWE television.