Kevin Owens was crowned as the new WWE Universal Champion a couple of weeks ago. He has only been on the main roster 15 months or so, and he’s the top champion of Raw. When he debuted on Raw in May 2015, he began a feud right off the bat with him. He faced John Cena at Elimination Chamber and beat him clean. He did end up losing the next two pay-per-view matches to Cena but nonetheless ended up looking like a big star coming out of the feud.
Owens has been one of the most featured performers on the whole roster. In fact, he holds the record of being the first superstar in WWE history to wrestle all pay-per-views in a calendar year since his debut. Charlotte became the second to do so this year at Battleground. Point is, Owens has also been one of the more carefully and gradually pushed superstars on the roster, and it was evident for quite some time that he was being positioned for a top heel role.
It is no secret that The Prize Fighter is a family man. He makes it a big part of his character, and also never hides his love for his family in real life. In fact, it is also no secret that his son is a big John Cena fan. When Owens debuted to confront Cena, his wife even recorded his son Owen’s reaction.
Owens was recently on Talk Is Jericho, where he told a great story about the time his son got to meet his hero John Cena for the first time. He said the following:
“My son's such a big John Cena fan. He would ask me 'when are you gonna wrestle John Cena?' 'Eh, I don't know, maybe one day.'
We got to do it, his reaction was all over Twitter and Facebook. It went viral because my wife recorded it because she knew what I was doing but he didn't know, he just knew I was going to be on Raw. But also, the coolest part was I went to the Performance Center a few weeks before the match and John was there. I knew he was going to be there, John told me 'bring Owen.' So Owen walked in, he had no idea, it was his first time at the Performance Center, and then he saw John.
[I] was like 'who's that,' [and he said] 'that's John Cena!' John gave him a letter that he handwrote. I don't even know if I'm supposed to say that, I don't know if John is a big fan of me telling this, but he handwrote a letter to my son, like two full pages. Explaining to him like...
I was telling John once when we were preparing a promo, I was saying like 'you know, if you want to make it a little personal, I could talk about this one time WWE had a show at the Bell Centre [in Montreal] and I took my son. I was second row and everybody there knew 'that's Kevin Steen, he's a professional wrestler, but look at him in the second row of the WWE show with his son. I bet he wishes he was in the ring, you know?' But I put that aside because I just wanted my son to be able to shake John Cena's hand, and when your match ended I rushed the guardrail with my son just like any other fan would, and instead of coming around the ring and shaking hands, you just left, you went to the back and my son was crushed.
And John was like 'oh my God, I'm so sorry.' No, it's fine, he was fine a minute later... I'm just saying, do you want to talk about this [in the promo]? He said 'maybe we keep this for later, but I feel terrible, please tell Owen I'm sorry.'
And the letter was John basically apologizing for that. Honestly, as a father, my crowning moment now is that moment when I got to see my son interact with John for the first time, and just see how happy Owen was. And John Cena is the one to thank for that, but I feel like a great dad."