Many WWE Superstars are respected for the hard work they put in during a match and to tell whatever story the creative team wants them to tell. Many wrestling fans have favorite wrestlers who they will support no matter what, and who they will often try to get autographs or pictures with. As many fans have found out, there are just some wrestlers who are absolute jerks in real life.
Some wrestlers are jerks because of the way they treat their fans, whether it be pretending they don’t exist or rudely interacting with fans at the airport. Other wrestlers might be jerks because of the legal dilemmas they found themselves embroiled in. Whatever the reason, the way WWE Superstars are presented to viewers on WWE programming may actually be far from the type of person they are in real life.
As we are about to find out, some of the most legendary and well-liked wrestlers are actually big jerks in real life. Sadly, wrestlers being rude to fans is not a thing of the past. Even some of the current, fan favourite wrestlers still let their ego get in the way and affect their reputation.
Let’s explore eight female wrestlers and seven male wrestlers who happen to actually be jerks in real life. Are there other wrestlers you thought we may have overlooked? Let us know in the comments section.
15 Female: The Fabulous Moolah
We start off this list with arguably one of the best women’s wrestlers in the history of the WWE. The Fabulous Moolah gave it all in the ring and was regarded as a quality wrestler. Of course, her greatest achievement is reigning as Women’s Champion for an unprecedented 30 years! While Moolah was hailed for promoting the talents of other female wrestlers, that’s also where Moolah turned out not to be the nicest person. Multiple female wrestlers at that time had accused Moolah of essentially pimping them out, in exchange for money or other favors. Wrestlers who didn’t cooperate would end up being bad-mouthed by Moolah, who did all she could to wreck their careers. As one could imagine, this behavior didn’t exactly make Moolah very popular nor did it earn her the best reputation behind the scenes.
14 Male: Seth Rollins
Seth Rollins has become a fan favourite in recent years because of his wrestling talents and his ability to connect with the WWE universe. Many people love watching Rollins wrestle, and he should be a frequent main eventer in WWE for the foreseeable future. Rollins is especially valuable to the company since he is a viable talent as both a heel and a face.
Behind the scenes, Rollins has been rumoured to have demanded special treatment.
A story circulated about a fan claiming that Rollins insisted on cutting in line for a flight, and seemed offended when the airport employee didn’t know who he was. There is also the oft-discussed controversy where Rollins was caught cheating on his former fiancée with former WWE wrestler Zahra Schreiber. This landed Rollins in a hotbed of controversy.
13 Female: Melina
Melina was an incredibly athletic wrestler during her time with the WWE. Somewhat appropriately, Melina portrayed an arrogant, egotistical character who drew the ire of WWE fans. While that makes her a great heel for WWE programming, it also caused problems backstage since Melina was almost the exact same person in real life.
At one point, wrestling veteran Lita kicked Melina out of the women’s locker room due to repeatedly acting horribly. She also developed quite the reputation for sleeping around, which generated a fair bit of heat on her backstage. Moreover, she also publicly shamed ex-boyfriend John Morrison by posting a photo of his Viagra pills. Ouch!
12 Male: Sami Zayn
Sami Zayn’s inclusion on this list is probably one of the most shocking. While Zayn has usually portrayed a good guy on TV and is generally loved by wrestling fans, he apparently could be a real pain in real life. Backstage in WWE, Zayn has been rumored to have been catching heat for being difficult to work with.
There have been some stories circulating around online that tell how Zayn was a jerk even back on his days in the independent circuit, pre-WWE. People on Reddit, as well as other similar sites, have often called out Zayn for being downright rude and a jerk to fans. He frequently blew off fans who patiently waited for his autograph, and came across as arrogant and conceited in other circumstances. While it’s possible that Zayn has since matured (recent backstage incident with Kevin Owens aside), those incidents do not portray Zayn in the best light.
11 Female: Sasha Banks
Sasha Banks is a beloved wrestler who unfortunately makes an appearance on this list. Banks is a talented wrestler who will likely continue to have a successful run with the WWE and have multiple championship reigns on top of the ones she's had, but she doesn’t exactly have a perfectly clean reputation outside the ring.
Banks has often been criticized for not wanting to take photos with fans, which is her right.
However, there was an instance where Banks seemed to have willingly taken a photo with a fan. When the fan posted the photo to social media and tagged her in it to thank her, Banks called him an “airport creeper.” That does not portray her in the best light, especially since the fan was trying to thank her for taking a photo with him.
10 Male: Randy Orton
Here's another wrestler who you can’t say your surprised to find included on this list. Although Randy Orton has matured in recent years and become a family man, the Viper does have a history of being a jerk – including several incidents that have stained his reputation. Orton, by his own admission, had major entitlement and attitude issues when he first started out in the WWE. That rubbed many people the wrong way, but WWE stood by him. He had allegedly been the one who convinced Vince McMahon to fire Mr. Kennedy, because Orton was annoyed over the way Kennedy botched a single move during a match.
Perhaps a more disturbing and recent incident was when Orton did a radio interview and told everyone that Kelly Kelly had slept with “at least ten wrestlers”. Orton did later apologize to Kelly about his comments, but it nevertheless makes us look at Orton as nothing more than a jerk. There have also been plenty of interactions with fans that have Orton coming across as a huge jerk.
9 Female: Lana
Lana might only just barely be considered a female wrestler, yet she has arguably one of the worst reputations among the women’s roster in WWE right now. Lana started out as much-talked about heel manager for Rusev, before WWE transitioned her into becoming a wrestler. In 2017, Lana struggled mightily in the ring and is now barely getting any screen time as the manager for Tamina. One would think Lana would be willing and eager to learn from the other women, many of whom are very talented wrestlers, but that hasn’t been the case.
It has been reported that Lana has a really bad attitude and has a reputation for getting into drama with some of the other women.
Lana was in a feud with Summer Rae on social media, and also has heat with Sasha Banks and Paige. All of these things come across as showing Lana to be a jerk.
8 Male: Enzo Amore
Obviously, the recent allegations against Enzo Amore would warrant a placement on this list if they turn out to be true, but even if the allegations are false, Enzo has plenty of other instances that would label him as a jerk. There have been many reports and whispers among his coworkers that the person we saw on television is pretty much who he is. He's been accused of having a nasty ego, thinking he's a bigger star than he is and bragging about who he hangs out with in Los Angeles. Over the past year, he had been mounting plenty of heat backstage and the WWE chose to release him when he didn't notify them that there was a police investigation going on about his allegations.
7 Female: Michelle McCool
Michelle McCool was one of the few female wrestlers of her time that was just as well known for her in-ring prowess as she was for her looks. While very talented as a performer, McCool has been accused of using her pull backstage that comes from her marriage to The Undertaker. Others have accused her of growing a big ego as she got a bigger push in the company. She's also been reported to have blown off fans requesting autographs or refusing to take photos with fans. Perhaps McCool has just become a private person by marrying The Undertaker, but she sure has rubbed a lot of people the wrong way.
Could her recent five eliminations in the Royal Rumble have been another instance of backstage pull?
6 Male: John Bradshaw Layfield
Odds are you won’t find many people opposed to placing John Bradshaw Layfield (JBL) on the list of wrestlers who are downright jerks. Though he had a storied career in the WWE, he has long had a reputation of being a huge bully and jerk behind the scenes. There have been many stories of wrestlers accusing JBL of hazing younger wrestlers. When The Miz first joined the company, he was treated very disrespectfully by JBL when he wouldn’t let Miz enter the locker room. More recently, there was a huge story about how Mauro Ranallo decided to quit WWE because of mistreatment by JBL. While Ranallo has denied him leaving WWE had anything to do with JBL (though he eventually returned), neither party has spoke out and denied that bullying occurred.
5 Female: Sable
Odds are you probably expected Sable’s husband, Brock Lesnar, to make be labelled a jerk on this list. Truth be told, Lesnar admits he is a jerk and would warrant inclusion, but what about his wife? Sable was one of the first women to really become a huge draw for WWE, and she even overshadowed her ex-husband Marc Mero, because she had the innate ability to get people to pay attention to her.
Sable ultimately developed a huge ego and it was widely speculated that just about every other woman in the locker room at the time had issues with her attitude.
Sable did not seem willing or interested in making friends with the other women, which is not too dissimilar from how Brock Lesnar is backstage now. Sable is often only seen in public now when traveling with Brock and from what fans have gathered, she's not the most approachable person.
4 Male: Vince McMahon
Let’s just get this one out of the way. Vince McMahon probably would not have made it as far as he did, and make WWE as big as it is today, without being a jerk to some people.
True to his on-screen heel character, Vince has stomped over and angered many wrestlers over his lengthy career in the industry.
There have been numerous stories about McMahon getting into real fights with his Superstars. He was accused of illegally distributing steroids to his wrestlers in a very high-profile criminal trial in the 1990s, though he was eventually acquitted.
Perhaps even worse, especially in light of the recent #MeToo movement, McMahon has oft been accused of sexual harassment and misconduct. Notably, former referee Rita Chatteron accused McMahon of forcing himself on her in a limo. Regardless whether those allegations are true or not, Vince McMahon has shown himself to be a real big jerk!
3 Female: Stacy Keibler
Stacy Keibler defined the term “WWE Diva.” She was not a gifted wrestler, but she was (and still is) incredibly attractive. As with most of the other female wrestlers at the time, Keibler was used as eye candy and was a big fan favourite because of her appearance. Even though Keibler was a fan favourite, she was revealed to have not been the nicest person to meet outside of the ring. More often than not, Keibler rarely seemed interested in meeting or interacting with fans – often preferring to just ignore them altogether.
Not wanting to sign autographs is one thing, but not even acknowledging the fans is quite another thing. Keibler might have been a stunner for the WWE, but perhaps she became too arrogant or full of herself for her own good.
2 Male: Hulk Hogan
Hulk Hogan is another WWE legend who makes an unfortunate appearance on this list. Though the days of Hulkamania running wild have been long gone, Hogan has managed to remain in the wrestling headlines.
Unfortunately, Hogan has generated a great deal of controversy that have called into question the type of person he is.
In 2015, Hogan’s private tape was leaked, depicting him having an affair with close friend Bubba the Love Sponge's wife. More shockingly, Hogan uttered an offensive racial slur when referring to his daughter’s boyfriend at the time. If that doesn’t make him a jerk, as well as a racist, then I’m not sure what does. WWE rightly cut all ties with Hogan in the aftermath, and has yet to acknowledge him on WWE programming. It says a lot when Hogan wasn’t a part of Raw’s 25th anniversary show.
1 Female: Lita
Lita, another WWE Hall of Famer who appears on this list, was one of the most entertaining female wrestlers in WWE. Indeed, she should be credited with helping to bring women’s wrestling to the forefront. Even with all her in-ring talents, her personal life controversies show Lita to be a real jerk. Any wrestling fan in the mid-2000s has likely heard about the whole incident involving Lita cheating on Matt Hardy with his best friend, Edge. We won’t cover the whole story, but it goes without saying that her actions made Lita look like a real jerk.
Beyond that, Lita also has been reported to be rude to fans who politely ask for an autograph or a picture. These instances are not really becoming of someone who should be seen as a role model.