One of the most popular professional wrestlers in the WWE has decided to take a new step in his career. John Cena, both a fan favorite and one of the most hated men in wrestling today, will be taking away from the entertainment ring, and heading to the real fights of the octagon this month
It has been announced that Cena, who has been training under MMA legend Chuck Liddell for several months, will face his first professional fight in mid-October.
At this point, it is unclear who Cena will be facing in his initial bout, but UFC sources have said not to expect his first fight to be against any ‘all-star’ fighter. Cena reportedly got the idea to fighting in the MMA arena from fellow pro-wrestler and one-time UFC champion Brock Lesner, but fans and sports insiders alike are already questioning if he can handle taking on the ‘real fights’ of the UFC.
“Cena is very prepared. He knows these are real badass fighters, throwing real punches and kicks,” said UFC president Dana White. “Cena is not taking this lightly, like the hits he takes in the WWE. I mean, there is almost a 100% certainty that he is going to get his ass handed to him, but at least he knows what’s coming. Cena is a marvelous showman, and will certainly put on a great show for us in the UFC.”
Cena did speak to the press, and although not very clear about his wrestling future, he was very concerned about his upcoming fight for the UFC.
“Whoever they have me facing, he is going to wish that the fight was as staged as pro wrestling. For decades the WWE, and wrestling in general, have been the joke of the sports world,” said Cena. “They see people like me, jacked and ‘pretending,’ and they think I can’t hold my own. This is to prove that I’m a real fighter, and can take it and give it, 100 percent. I’ve been in the ring. I’ve been in front of Hollywood cameras. This is just the next notch in my belt. Wrestling may be pre-determined, but it’s not fake. I didn’t tear my pectoral muscle completely in half playing hopscotch.”
It has been rumored that Cena may fight Kimbo Slice in his first bout, but so far nothing is signed on paper. Kimbo Slice, who became famous after internet videos showed him in street fights dominating contenders, turned out to be a complete joke once he entered the UFC, losing every match. He was released from his contract with the company, but they have agreed to possibly sign him for this one final bout against Cena.
The WWE has Cena under contract, and judging by the amount of publicity he raises for the company, not to mention the millions of dollars he makes for owner Vince McMahon, that contract probably has an end date of ‘never.’ The company has not commented on how often Cena will still be featured in WWE events, but a schedule of a UFC fighter can be pretty time-consuming. It fair to assume that Cena will be dividing his time between the squared-circle and the octagon come this fall.