There's a common trend among today's wrestling fans, especially of the adult demographic and that is to hate John Cena. Not just dislike, I mean fans genuinely loathe the sight of Cena, for one reason or another. I'm going to speak honestly, from the perspective of a lifelong, 37-year-old wrestling fan, who fell in love with the business during the Golden Era.
Personally, I more or less stand in the middle of the road, when it comes to this topic. While I'm not necessarily a huge fan of John Cena, I have never really disliked him either. In fact, I respect what he's done and to be honest, I have a hard time understanding the devout hatred towards him. Nonetheless, there are those who just don't like him and regardless what you or I ever say, they will never like him, no matter what.
The funniest part of all of this madness is many of them cannot give you an honest, legit reason for their disdain towards the 15-time world champ.
With this said, there are still plenty of folks out there who do like John Cena. There are those who go beyond liking Cena and actually revere him to a near righteous stature, similar to some sort of major religious figure. If you have any doubt about that notion, just check the WWE merchandise sales for the past decade, not another superstar comes even remotely close to the merch. sales that Cena has compiled.
There may be some reading this who question why anyone would actually care enough bout John Cena, to actually purchase something with his name and/or likeness on it. Well, look no further, because, in this column, I will enlighten you with several reasons why fans love John Cena.
Since day one, even as "The Prototype," he has always displayed a strong sense of dedication towards making the sport as good as he possibly can, with his contributions and staunch degree of hard work. If I were to ask you to find me even one person on any professional wrestling roster who is as dedicated to the betterment of professional wrestling as John Cena is, I believe you would be hard pressed to come up with that person.
His dedication is evident in his speech, his actions, and his overall demeanor. He loves the business and he is committed to entertaining the common wrestling fan to the highest degree and it shows.
After all, the man has accomplished everything and then some, he has nothing left to prove and it's not like he's hurting financially. So, why not just walk away and live happily ever after, down by the beach in South Florida, in your mansion, with your smoking hot girlfriend?
Because his dedication trumps his materialistic desire to let it go just yet. He still has fuel in the tank and until he can physically go no more, you can expect to see John Cena performing at the highest level possible.
9. Great Ambassador
Not only is John Cena an ambassador for charitable organizations, such as Make-A-Wish, but he's also a tremendous ambassador for the WWE and the WWE Superstars. All around the world, when the company needs someone to go out and represent everything that is right and good about the WWE, you can rest assured they'll call on John Cena.
He's been known for speaking in countries all over the globe, delivering messages of positivity and encouraging people by his actions, not by some sort of thrown together, feel good scripted speech.
Cena has spoken everywhere imaginable, enlightening people all over about the global reach the WWE has and the type of top-notch, family friendly, quality entertainment they can expect with the brand.
His efforts have not only encouraged die-hard wrestling fans but has also brought in a new breed of fans, who may have never given the company a chance, had they not been witness to something John Cena said or did.
If you have ever had the opportunity to meet someone as globally known as John Cena, chances are, they were not very nice, or receptive towards you, unless you were at a function where you paid to meet that individual. In fact, they were probably a straight up jerk to you.
I know that's been my experience, more often than not. There have been some wrestlers I've come across who just don't like interacting with the fans. It's almost like they view fan interactions as a burden.
Well, that's certainly not the case with John Cena. I've had the opportunity to meet Cena several times. Once was at a Comi-Con convention, once at a grocery store in Tampa and the other two times at two different airports. Each and every time, he was overly kind to each and every single fan who approached him. He took his time, spoke with each fan, individually and made each one feel like they were more like friends than fans.
There was even an instance at the Atlanta airport where Cena missed a connecting flight and had to wait 4 more hours for another flight, all because he wanted to make sure each fan had their moment with him. He's always been extremely down to earth and has always treated each person with the utmost respect and appreciation. This level of humbleness is something I've yet to see duplicated.
There was a remark made during last week's Smackdown, where John Cena was called a "part-timer," during an in-ring promo by Dean Ambrose. With all due respect to the Lunatic Fringe, John Cena is far from a part-timer. Not only is Cena on nearly every televised show, which now he's exclusive to Smackdown, but he is always on the job, but more often than not, you can find John Cena and most house shows as well, barring any sort of injury that would prevent him from appearing.
But, my point is, no one should ever question whether or not Cena has ever carried his workload. Not only that but in between WWE events and appearances, Cena can be found on a movie set, filming a commercial, speaking at an engagement or somewhere....working.
6. Mic Work
The art of delivering a good promo is something that very few have truly mastered. One person who has set himself apart from the pack, in regards to top-tier mic skills, is Paul Heyman. Heyman is a huge reason why Brock Lesnar has achieved the level of success he has.
While Cena isn't quite as fluent on the mic as Heyman, he's pretty darn good. In fact, he's really good, especially in recent years. Cena has rivaled with some of the best talkers in the business, such as The Rock and Bray Wyatt and he's always held his own.
Sometimes, the battle begins on the mic and John Cena has reached the highest level in his career to date, as far as his promo work is concerned and he's just getting better.
5. Putting Talent Over
This is one that may fuel some disagreement, but if you simply examine the facts, especially lately, it's clear that John Cena is indeed a team player. Just ask someone like Kevin Owens or even Dean Ambrose. Both have been in the ring with Cena and have experienced the ways in which Cena puts up and coming talent over.
Someone who is on the level that Cena is on, they could easily demand whatever they want, in regards to something that only benefits them in particular. But, it's obvious in his body of work that John Cena is genuinely invested in the future of the business and the company itself.
Cena realizes that he will soon be looking towards walking away and there needs to be a new crop, a new stockpile of quality talent, capable of carrying the company and the entire industry forward.
4. Butts In Seats
No matter where you go to watch a WWE event, be it small town or major city, if John Cena is booked for the event, you will see a big crowd, much bigger than if he were not advertised for the show. John knows that he has name recognition and this actually goes back to what we talked about earlier, with his workload and dedication.
The bottom line is simple, if John Cena is advertised to be on any show, anywhere in the world, whether it's televised or not, his name alone is a guaranteed draw, resulting in butts in seats, which turns into money, lots of money.
3. In-Ring Ability
Here's another one that the Cena detractors will argue against. Contrary to what you've probably heard, John Cena has more than just "five moves of doom" in his arsenal. While his ring work hasn't always been as good as it is today, he's never been absolutely terrible in the ring.
Cena is a fantastic in-ring storyteller. It starts with his ability to incorporate the proper facial expressions, down to his timing and maneuver execution.
John Cena is a really good in-ring performer. Just, for some reason, someone decided one day to start this nonsense about his lack of skill in the ring. Don't take my word for it, but I'd also encourage you to not take some of the others words for it either.
Just watch his work, watch him execute, watch his selling work and as I mentioned, watch his facial expressions and how he tells a story, using his body. I think you'll have to agree that Cena is a pretty good wrestler, despite what you've heard.
2. Role Model
If you're a parent of a small child, one who has inherited your love for professional wrestling, chances are, they've probably already made up their mind who their favorites are. When it comes to looking up to one of these larger than life personas that they watch with you on television, who else would you want your child to admire and look up to?
John Cena is constantly encouraging the masses with his message of never giving up and always doing things the right way. He is positive, hard working, passionate and intense. Those are definitely strong qualities of someone I'd want my child looking to as a potential role model.
1. Make-A-Wish Foundation
Unless you just started watching professional wrestling this morning, or perhaps you have lived your life under a rock, chances are, you are well aware of all the charitable work John Cena has done with the Make-A-Wish Foundation. In fact, Cena eclipsed over 500 wishes granted, earlier in 2016, which has made him the record holder for the person who has granted the most wishes, through Make-A-Wish.
The love he's spread through this organization is something that you simply cannot put into words. He has put smiles on the faces of literally hundreds of kids who are diagnosed with a terminal illness of some sort. John Cena gives a brief escape from a difficult situation and that in itself is something money cannot buy.