WWE Executive Director Bruce Prichard has praised John Cena’s talent and desire, claiming the 16-time WWE Champion was “willing to sacrifice and do whatever it took to be the best.”
During the early to mid 2000’s, WWE was in a transition period as the company looked to their Ohio Valley Wrestling developmental talent to come in and become WWE Superstars.
As the full-time careers for its biggest names Steve Austin and The Rock were coming to an end, and with WWE effectively owning its biggest competition after purchasing WCW and ECW in 2001, the company looked to OVW to help as it launched the “Ruthless Aggression” era.
During this time John Cena debuted in June 2002 on SmackDown, answering an open challenge by Kurt Angle. Over the following three years, Cena developed his character and started to have a love/hate relationship with certain age groups of the WWE Universe, something that would continue throughout his career.
In 2005, Cena would claim the first of his 16 WWE Championships, defeating JBL at WrestleMania 21.
It was Cena’s overall positive attitude and many talents that helped him stand out to WWE bosses, giving them confidence that he could be the man to take the company forward, according to Bruce Pritchard.
Pritchard was discussing the man you cannot see on his Something to Wrestle podcast, as he and co-host Conrad Thompson dedicated a second part to their discussion on the rise of John Cena.
During the discussion, Prichard listed who bosses were considering and how Cena had the fight required to succeed.
“Cena was in that discussion, Batista, Brock [Lesnar] had been in that discussion at one point –- there were a lot of guys.”
“Dusty [Rhodes] was in love with Randy Orton … that’s the only way to go, third generation wrestler, youth and all this stuff. Cena — he’s got the look, he’s got the charisma, he’s got everything and the best attitude out of all of them.
All of them were fighting hard … being the top talent is a shoot and you’ve got to fight to get there, and if you can’t do that and you aren’t willing to do that, then you’re never gonna make it.”
Bruce Prichard went on to explain how John Cena worked to earn his place amongst the WWE elite, comparing his desire to that of two WWE Hall of Famers.
“The top guys weren’t people that just got it handed to them. Guys like Cena, Austin, Rock, Hunter [Triple H], [Mick] Foley –- those guys all wanted to be the guy.”
“And they wanted everything that came with it… they really wanted to be the best at what they did. They were willing to sacrifice and do whatever it took to be the best.”
Cena was interrupted by Grayson Waller, who goaded the leader of the Cenation army into a brawl before receiving an Attitude Adjustment.
Waller has attempted to gain further traction with one of Cena’s most infamous rivals The Rock. Waller looked to antagonize The Rock on social media but faced a twitter based smackdown from The Great One.
H/t to WrestlingInc