|WWE® Superstar John Cena®’s Thursday Schedule:|
3:00PM - Photo Ops – VIP’s 1st then General Admission
5:00PM - Autographs – VIP’s 1st then General Admission
Really, now. Who ever saw John Cena coming? When he debuted on SmackDown in June 2002, he was just a beefy guy in purple trunks. Within a year of his introduction, he transformed into the battle-rapping, chain-wielding “Doctor of Thuganomics.” Now, he’s the biggest star in WWE — but he’s also the most polarizing.
Fans love him or hate him. There’s no middle ground, and that’s the power of John Cena. Whatever you think of The Champ, there’s no denying his actions impact everything and everyone around him. Sure, he has his detractors, and they’re vocal, but Cena is still easily the most admired competitor in WWE, as evidenced by his nine million–plus Facebook followers. Cenation is strong. And its message is spreading. Whether competing in the squared circle, performing in front of the camera or donating time to charitable organizations like Make-A-Wish, The Champ is there.
A product of West Newbury, Mass., Cena discovered sports and weightlifting in his teens. He attended Springfield College, where he earned a degree in exercise physiology and excelled as a Division III All-American offensive lineman. Although he grew up a huge fan of such Superstars as Hulk Hogan and Ultimate Warrior, Cena only seriously considered becoming one himself while working the counter at Gold’s Gym in Venice, Calif. There, a wrestler-in-training encouraged him to enroll in class to learn the ropes. From day one, he was hooked.
A year later, Cena was signed by WWE to a developmental contract. What did he have that others didn’t? A physique that looked as though it were formed from Portland cement, mic skills that would shame a Roman senator, the tireless perseverance of Superman, and a devastating move that could turn even the most cast-iron grapplers into bags of mulch.
Throughout the past decade, Cena has amassed many honors, most notably an amazing 11 WWE Championships and two World Heavyweight Titles. He’s no stranger to struggle — in 2012 alone he lost to The Rock at WrestleMania XXVIII, fell to CM Punk on multiple occasions and became the first Superstar to unsuccessfully cash in a Money in the Bank contract — but the man does not quit.
In 2013, the Cenation Leader has displayed his determination, winning the 2013 Royal Rumble Match and going on to WrestleMania where he defeated The Rock in the main event to win redemption and the WWE Title. Since then, Cena has faced down massive challengers like Ryback and Mark Henry, and refused to be denied. That is, until SummerSlam, when Daniel Bryan — whom Cena personally chose to face at The Biggest Party of the Summer — bested the Cenation Leader and won the WWE Title.
An injury put Cena on the sideline after that bout, but he returned to the ring at WWE Hell in a Cell on Oct. 27, where he defeated Alberto Del Rio to claim the World Heavyweight Title and his 14th World Championship reign. The Champ entered the biggest contest in WWE history when he faced WWE Champion Randy Orton in a Tables, Ladders & Chairs Match at WWE TLC. After a brutal battle, The Viper emerged victorious, claiming Cena’s title to become the first-ever WWE World Heavyweight Champion. The two were set for a rematch at Royal Rumble, but Cena fell short in the effort thanks to the interference of Bray Wyatt.
At Elimination Chamber, Cena was one of the final Superstars left in the contest when The Wyatt Family attacked. Wyatt, Luke Harper and Erick Rowan decimated Cena, allowing for Randy Orton to eliminate the Cenation leader from the match. The next night on Raw, The Wyatts attacked again, leaving Cena with a severely injured knee after a brutal assault. Not one to be kept down, Cena returned to call the twisted clan out, setting up a dangerous showdown with The Eater of Worlds on The Grandest Stage of Them All.
The Cenation leader once again demonstrated that he can rise above any obstacles thrown his way – even an all-out assault on his legacy – when he defeated Bray Wyatt at WrestleMania 30 in New Orleans.