It’s no shock that backstage beefs are a thing in WWE. You can’t have people known for huge egos and wanting to be on top working constantly and not have guys clashing. Throughout wrestling history, there are tales of guys who seemed good friends and partners but couldn’t stand each other. Likewise, more than one program ruined by the guys involved hating each other for real and unable to be professional. Some are epic such as the Matt Hardy/Edge conflict and get more interest with the Internet exposing the backstage goings-on. Even women aren’t immune to this, some of the ladies proving they can carry huge beefs as much as any guy could.
Of course, it’s easy to look at past feuds through wrestling. Likewise, there are guys in WWE currently who have conflicts with former workers (Ryback vs John Cena is a prime example). But there are still plenty of hot feuds going backstage, some very notable, others a bit surprising. So many times, WWE can work on that for some on-air programs while other times, they prefer it just stay backstage. Some are more rumor while others are well documented and showcase the egos abounding. Here are eight pairs of male employees and 7 female pairs that clearly despise each other and show how the backstage feuds are wilder than in the ring.
15. Male: Triple H and Shane McMahon
This might seem a surprise but it does show that often, family issues can be pretty wild. Many believe Triple H is the heir apparent for WWE, the guy likely to take over when Vince finally retires (Or dies). This is not going well by Shane who has long believed, as the real son, he would be in charge. Conflicts have been happening between them but growing in the last year with more clashes over talent and such. Rumors are that Shane sides with Vince putting down NXT guys just because he doesn’t like Triple H running NXT so well and that leads to burials of NXT guys on the main roster.
Not helping is that Kevin Dunn, Vince’s long-time right hand man, is backing Shane more over Hunter. For his part, Hunter is trying to shift things but a bit but is annoyed Shane wants a “business as usual” approach. In essence, it’s the classic tale of the two sons (one natural, one the in-law) battling for their father’s favor and fans and WWE are caught in the middle.
14. Female: Summer Rae and Natayla
Even they don’t seem to understand what their beef is. A highlight on “Total Divas” is how Summer and Nattie just don’t get along at all, clashing constantly. The issue appears to be that Natalya prides herself on being a real wrestler, a hard worker who puts up with dumb stuff but still wanting to be respected. Whereas Summer got the job for being a dancer and looking hot. But both women have gone on record saying that somehow, just being near one another drives them crazy. It’s led to clashes that make for great TV but also clashes backstage with Nattie clear she wants nothing to do with a program with Summer who she continues to dismiss as just a dancer and not a serious star. Nattie herself is doing well with a title run yet somehow these two just don’t get along.
13. Male: JBL and Maura Ranallo
You can fill an entire list with all the guys JBL has made enemies of over the years. Mauro Ranallo is just the latest but still among the most notable. Wowing with his fun commentary, Ranallo was hired for SmackDown with JBL sharing it with him. But then the bipolar Ranallo no-showed and said he was doing so because of the horrific bullying JBL is infamous for. Naturally, fans were totally on his side but shockingly, WWE decided to let Ranallo go rather than lose JBL.
That got them such massively bad press that they had to hire Maruo back for NXT. But fans preferred him on SmackDown and see this as yet another pass for JBL, a guy whose conduct should have gotten him fired long ago and thus yet another entry to the man’s very long enemies list. With JBL leaving WWE last month, we’ll see if Ranallo gets placed back on the main roster.
12. Female: Lana and Dana Brooke
It says a lot Lana has three entries on this list. There’s no denying she looks amazing with her ravishing, hot outfits, killer legs and attitude. But that same attitude leads to Lana getting in hot water a lot with her fellow women in WWE. They began clashing in training in NXT and “Total Divas” focused on their conflict. The big thing is that Lana was planning on making the cartwheel splash her finisher and not happy that Dana started using it.
Lana ranted on it backstage about Brooke stealing her idea and Dana not part of “Divas” which means that this was not scripted. The beef gets bigger with Dana taking a lower rung on the roster and Lana still a star and is only one of many cases where Lana has as many enemies backstage as she does before the cameras.
11. Male: Roman Reigns and Brock Lesnar
This may not be a huge shock given the guys we’re talking about. Brock Lesnar is infamous for his ego and clashing with people, using his huge clout to get his own way. Roman Reigns is clearly Vince’s favorite and pushed hard despite how fans wish WWE wouldn’t shove them down their throats so much. Brock wasn’t happy facing Roman at WrestleMania, knowing the bad fan heat on Roman would hurt the match. The two were united by how annoyed they were the plan was to have Rollins cash in MITB to win the belt but that truce faded fast.
The two clearly believe each is the star who should go over the other although Roman (like others) doesn’t like Brock’s light schedule and Brock thinks Roman is just not right for the main event. So when these egos clash, it gets ugly.
10. Female: Charlotte and Paige
Ric Flair was infamous for often getting into real feuds with guys. So maybe it’s not a surprise his daughter has inherited that trait. The “Queen” has gotten into some fights with ladies but Paige is a major one as it’s clear from backstage reports the two loathe one another. It all got started when Paige was on the main roster and being asked who among the NXT ladies deserved promotion. She immediately said Bayley and Becky Lynch, ignoring Charlotte despite how most were calling the latter the best of the bunch. Charlotte started firing out on Twitter that Paige was worried Charlotte would take her spot.
Paige fired back she was self-made and Paige dating Charlotte’s ex, Albert Del Rio, just added to the heat. It came up in a huge feud with Paige taking shots on Charlotte’s personal life (even her late brother) that clearly mixed real life with storyline. When Paige returns, expect it to continue as these two are clear enemies.
9. Male: John Cena and Dolph Ziggler
Much is being made over how Dolph Ziggler is not happy with his place in WWE right now. His act of imitating other wrestlers and mocking fans for liking this style is clearly based on his real feelings. Cena has been a frequent target with Ziggler slamming fans for liking a cookie-cutter worker like that. This is based on real feelings as Ziggler seems to think Cena cut down a major push of his in 2012 and has worked to bury Ziggler more. Cena claims to just be doing his job and such but it’s clear some issues remain. Bigger is that Cena is with Nikki Bella, Ziggler’s former girlfriend and clearly some heat over that. So both personal and professional, the duo are clashing and obvious how it’s leading to Ziggler’s possible exit from the company soon.
8. Female: Summer Rae and Lana
The gorgeous Lana has gotten fans over very nicely with her “Russian” act and her amazingly hot presence. However, she’s also rubbed a few the wrong way with that attitude and that includes Summer Rae. The big bit was when Lana took to Twitter to announce she and Rusev were engaged…right when an on-screen program had Rusev teamed with Summer and Lana with Dolph Ziggler, a storyline Vince himself wanted to push hard. Thus, the entire program had to be quickly scrapped which did not please Summer.
Then last year, Summer got involved with a line Enzo was making on Lana that also brought Rusev to tell them both to but out. The two are known to clash a few times backstage as well and for two very hot ladies, things are getting ugly between them.
7. Male: Seth Rollins and Sami Zayn
When El Generico was hired to NXT after years of wowing on the indies, fans were troubled by how Triple H was having him unmask. However, it proved to be a great move as Sami Zayn has been wowing fans with his fantastic work. He’s been held back by some injury and some fans complain he hasn’t been given his due in WWE. That’s mostly due to Sami’s own attitude and often rubbing folks the wrong way.
A clear case is with Seth Rollins as the two have had beefs going back to their days in ROH. While they have had great battles, the two clash a lot behind the scenes and that increases given Rollins’ star power. That’s increased with talk that the infamous RAW bit of Rollins and Reigns ignoring Zayn in a promo was based on real life conflict with Rollins claiming Zayn isn’t right for the main event. It’s a conflict that goes back a long time and looks to continue more today.
6. Female: Paige and Lana
There’s something about Lana that just lends herself to getting into feuds with her fellow ladies in WWE. This is perhaps her most notable as she went on TMZ to trash the planned “love quadrangle” storyline with her, Dolph Ziggler, Rusev and Summer that Vince wanted to push hard. In the same tweet, Lana trashed Paige, saying the Anti-Diva had been bullying her around ever since NXT and was trying to hold her down. Paige returned fire by claiming Lana was just “trying to get a storyline” and shots on how she was a real wrestler and Lana just eye candy.
For a while, the Twitter feud was far more interesting than what either woman was doing in the ring as they slammed each other but WWE made sure nothing else came of it. Lana may be sexy as hell but she sure doesn’t have many friends backstage.
5. Male: Roman Reigns and Randy Orton
Yes, another beef involving Roman Reigns. In this case, it goes back to when Roman was with the Shield and went against Orton in a six-man tag team match. Orton felt Roman blew a spot and berated him backstage in what turned into a huge screaming match. Orton also is among those who feel Roman’s push is badly done and that Vince is ignoring how fans just won’t accept Reigns as the face of the company. For his part, Roman was not happy on how Orton was the one who won the 2017 Rumble over Roman and clashing more. Many believe that Orton has been making Reigns look bad in matches just to pay him back and hurt his drive more. It’s no surprise they’re on separate brands now given their heat.
4. Female: Sasha Banks and Alexa Bliss
Sasha tends to get along pretty well with many backstage. She may act the arrogant type but in real life, she’s terrific and handles herself well with her fellow ladies. Well, almost all of them. Right now, Sasha and Alexa Bliss are carrying on a program with many impressed by how well they gel in the ring. They also take it to each other in social media. However, what looked to be part of the program now seems to be real life feelings. The duo have clashed since NXT and not in a good way with their matches known for being actually stiff affairs. When she did an interview on the many women who helped her become champion, Alexa omitted Banks and Banks has been known to block anyone on Twitter who even brings up Bliss’ name.
3. Male: Brock Lesnar and Chris Jericho
There’s been beef between them for a long time as Jericho wasn’t happy with Brock’s mega-push in 2002, thinking the guy hadn’t paid his dues. This led to an actual fight backstage which Jericho won. He was also among the most vocal slamming Brock’s exit from WWE in 2004. However, they didn’t cross paths too much over the next few years, even with Brock’s return. It came up after SummerSlam 2016 when Jericho mistakenly believed that Lesnar had bloodied Randy Orton for real rather than a work. That led to a yelling match between the duo, snapping at each other and had to be separated by others. They still clash a bit with Jericho unhappy about Lesnar’s come-and-go status as a champion and how it’s unlikely a match between them takes place given their high heat backstage.
2. Female: Maryse and Maria vs The Bellas
In 2009, Maryse left WWE to try and start her own business which didn’t go over too well. At the same time, Maria had been long released despite being nicely over with her great looks and funny manner. The Bella Twins had also been let go with some issues and wanting to come back. In 2012, WWE made approaches to all four women to resign them up and they got together. The stories vary a bit depending on who you talk to but it comes down to how the quartet agreed to hold out together for more money. However, the Bellas decided to go ahead and sign the deal as agreed and say that Maria and Maryse didn’t want it. The latter two have since returned to WWE but make it clear they don’t get along with the Twins and plenty of bad blood there.
1. Roman Reigns and Enzo Amore
Enzo Amore was a hot act in NXT with his fantastic promos and good work in the ring. He and Cass formed a team notable for their great opening promo and good work. On the main roster, Enzo was hampered by a concussion but still good. However, Enzo has gotten slews of heat backstage for his amazing arrogance as he buys into his own press to believe he’s a much bigger star than he really is. He’s clashing with numerous people and getting huge heat back and forth from various sources. Roman Reigns, who appears to now be leading the Wrestlers Court, has been taking it to Enzo, including kicking him off a bus when he was badmouthing the company and bragging about his paycheck over the phone.
Some actually back Reigns on this but Enzo clearly thinks he’s destined for much bigger things than he deserves and taking it to Roman for just saying what everyone else is thinking.
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