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Editors' Choice: Celebrities we'd like to see compete in WWE
Every so often, you hear a celebrity talk about the challenges of his or her latest project. The weight loss, the weight gains, the intense mental and physical preparation that goes into readying their mind, body and soul for their latest artistic/athletic endeavor.
With due respect to all of these luminaries, we at WWE.com say: How about taking a Kendo stick across the back?
Method acting for nine weeks or isolating oneself in an ashram to record a transcendental album is a toughie, no doubt about it. But there are few challenges as overwhelmingly grueling as the process that makes a WWE Superstar.
Still, though the climb from the floor to the ring is hard, there are some who might be up to the challenge. Here are eight musicians, athletes and movie stars WWE.com thinks could make the transition, and one we’re pretty sure can’t, but we’d love to see try.
Ronda Rousey, arguably the greatest pound-for-pound female mixed martial artist in history, recently “fan-girled out” on Twitter at the thought of filling Seth Rollins’ vacated spot in The Shield.
The feeling must be mutual for The Hounds of Justice, who would do well to align with the first American ever to win an Olympic medal in women’s judo.
Rousey, who adopted the nickname “Rowdy” after receiving the blessing of Roddy Piper himself, rarely needs more than a minute to finish a fight, thanks to her agony-inducing armbar submission maneuver. She remains undefeated in MMA competition, with little hope of a worthy adversary on the horizon.
Of course, formidable challenges would fill Rousey’s slate in WWE, from the likes of Divas Champion Paige to the technically-proficient Natalya. The Divas division would need to step up its game against such a fierce newcomer, while the “Rowdy” fighter would surely cherish the chance at battling the best the WWE Universe has to offer.
If she can adapt her MMA background to keep up with the varied styles and frenetic pace of WWE, Rousey could easily follow in Brock Lesnar’s footsteps to become one of the most dominant forces in sports-entertainment. — MATTHEW ARTUS
Outside of the WWE Universe, the word “diva” is almost synonymous with Beyoncé. The glammed-up, multi-time Grammy Award winner who made “Single Ladies” a wedding reception mainstay has forced many of us to question whether we are truly and honestly “ready for this jelly.” With her iconic status as a fashion trendsetter and her powerful persona — multiple if you count her former “Sasha Fierce” alter ego — “Queen Bey” would be a natural fit on Monday Night Raw, whether she was kickin’ it with The Funkadactyls or grappling with the likes of Alicia Fox.
And who knows? If ‘Yoncé brings her husband along for the ride, we might finally get that John Cena vs. Jay Z battle rap that we’ve wanted since WrestleMania XIX. — JAMES WORTMAN
Yeah, we know what you’re probably thinking — “Didn’t WWE already have a Goon compete in the ring?” And you would be correct. However, Tom Sestito is a “goon” with a lot more personality and unpredictability than any other athlete in the “Big Four” of professional sports leagues (NHL, NBA, NFL, MLB).
Few are better qualified than the Vancouver Canucks forward to step in between the ropes. Sestito can fight (on skates, no less!), and he does so often and with great relish. After only one full professional season in the National Hockey League, the bruiser from Rome, N.Y., has already established himself as one of the most feared tough guys on the ice.
In a league full of brawlers, Sestito leads the pack with a whopping 19 fights in 77 games, amassing 213 penalty minutes. During a contest against the Los Angeles Kings, he set a dubious NHL record in the 2013-14 season by accumulating 27 penalty minutes in just one second of ice time, earning an instigator, fighting, 10-minute misconduct and, finally, an ejection after just a single face-off. More than 500 hockey players didn’t accumulate that many minutes in an entire season.
Imagine Sestito squaring off against Sheamus, WWE’s resident fella who loves to fight. That would be a brawl worth seeing. — TOM LIODICE
There may not be another celebrity in Hollywood that’s more willing to step inside WWE’s squared circle than mega-movie star Hugh Jackman. The Academy Award-nominated performer from Oz — a multiple-time celebrity guest on Raw – has enthusiastically mixed it up between the ropes when tested by WWE Superstars.
With his jacked physique and an A-list movie résumé he built most notably as the Marvel Comics icon, Wolverine, Jackman can sing, he can dance, and he can fight. In 2011, he delivered a jaw-rattling right hand to Dolph Ziggler, and more recently executed a picture-perfect hip-toss that repelled a less-than-magnetic “X-Men” villain wannabe in Damien Sandow.
Although there would be no shortage of Superstars we’d love to see the Emmy winner get in the ring with, there is one dream showdown that Jackman himself clearly craves. Shortly after his April 28 appearance on Raw, the “Flying Aussie” called out John Cena on ESPN’s SportsCenter, prompting hopes of us one day witnessing this fantasy faceoff. — SCOTT TAYLOR
The man fought Floyd Mayweather in a burger joint.
WWE Superstars are an eccentric bunch for sure, but the roster is arguably short on hard-boiled maniacs who will throw themselves into the most immediate, most ridiculous fight they can think of. Bray Wyatt is a calculating crazy man, but he wouldn’t fight Floyd Mayweather in a burger joint — at least not without his customary sermon, man. Brock Lesnar? Well, he might fight Floyd Mayweather in a burger joint, but only after a substantial fee is negotiated by Paul Heyman.
There is one celebrity who can fill this void, and no one comes to mind more than T.I. Putting aside the fact that the man fought Floyd Mayweather in a burger joint, the hardscrabble rapper from Atlanta — born Clifford Harris — boasts a truly hard upbringing, so he knows how to handle adversity and rise above it. He’s tougher than a guy who rapped the bridge on “Blurred Lines” has any discernible right to be, and he even has a streetwise alter-ego, T.I.P., to help balance the business-savvy T.I. character. (Tip’s 2007 record, “T.I. vs. T.I.P.”, was a concept album that saw the two personas come to blows over T.I.’s soul. Eat your heart out, Underfaker.)
In closing, the man fought Floyd Mayweather in a burger joint. Sign him up immediately. — ANTHONY BENIGNO
Am I a Miley Cyrus fan? No. Do I think that her transformation from Disney’s darling to MTV’s twerk jerk is a sad commentary on society? Yes. So why then did I choose Billy Ray Cyrus’ daughter for this list of celebrities that I would like to see compete in a WWE ring? Simple: I want to see a young lady (yes, lady) with discipline and dignity teach Miley Cyrus humility.
After careful consideration, I nominate WWE’s only third-generation Diva and a true class act that I have known since she was a teenager, Natalya Neidhart, with this labor of love. Imagine a miserable Miley, in whatever inappropriate ring attire she had her dimwitted designer create, tapping out to the Sharpshooter on WWE’s globally televised Monday Night Raw. Her screams would be the best thing to come out of her mouth since Hannah Montana. — @JOEYSTYLES
“Alright, alright, alright.”
The Academy Award-winning, world-famous star of “Dallas Buyers Club” and “The Wolf of Wall Street,” Matthew McConaughey would be an amazing competitor in WWE. With his raw physicality and effortless charisma — not to mention his legendary abdominal muscles — this ultra-talented superstar of television and film could push his later career “McConaissance” to the next level inside the confines of the squared circle.
Habitually shirtless and oozing his particular down-home, Texan manliness, McConaughey already looks the part of a WWE Superstar. Whether he’s sporting his “Reign of Fire” shaved head or rocking his “Amistad” sideburns, you needn’t be a “True Detective” to deduce that he’s tailor-made for a WWE ring.
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Sure, it may seem an unusual choice for him to finish up his next project — Christopher Nolan’s much-anticipated “Interstellar” — then lace up his boots and become a WWE Superstar. But life is too short not to dream. And if anyone has the ability to pull it off (and his shirt while doing so), it would be the singular Matthew McConaughey.
“Alright,” indeed. — JAKE GRATE
Jerry “The King” Lawler, King Kong Bundy, “King” Harley Race … could “King James” be far behind?
LeBron James is arguably the most dominant player in the NBA, and there’s no reason to think the WWE Universe’s premier dunker — yes, Bron-Bron is a well-known WWE enthusiast, even giving replica WWE Titles to his Miami Heat teammates earlier this year — couldn’t succeed, if not thrive, as a Superstar.
At 6-foot-8 and 250 pounds, James’ imposing stature lends itself to more than highlight jams and vindictive blocks. It’s the type of XXL build that, unlike some ballers, isn’t all lank. He’s got bulk, as well as a known mean streak and a fighter’s physicality. Those ingredients make up the recipe for a future WWE Champion.
The Akron Hammer wouldn’t be the first to transition from the hardwood to canvas, either. Karl Malone and Dennis Rodman famously waged war in WCW, and before donning tights, Big Show and Kevin Nash sported b-ball jerseys in college. Plus, James even has the gear to be a Superstar: After breaking his nose in a game, he began wearing a fearsome black mask that was more Rey Mysterio than Ray Allen. And let’s not forget James’ free-agency leap in 2010 from the Cleveland Cavaliers to NBA black hats Miami Heat — a perceived act of betrayal on par with Seth Rollins’ turn on The Shield.
Should LeBron James ever look to take his talents elsewhere, Stamford, Conn., might be a good starting point. — JOHN CLAPP
Don't be fooled by the tattoo of the pretty, sombrero-wearing woman that adorns the length of Danny Trejo's chest. Unless you're watching "Spy Kids," there is nothing tender about this rugged thug-turned-actor who scrapped his way to winning lightweight and welterweight boxing titles in San Quentin Prison.
Trejo just turned a legit 70 years old, but no one will ever dare to call him brittle because he still looks tough as a bag of nails. He actually ages in what you could call "Danny Trejo Years" — the older he gets, the more intimidating he becomes. This imposing star of "From Dusk Till Dawn," "Heat" and "Machete" could quickly become WWE's most nefarious villain if given the chance, or at least a dangerous henchman for The Authority. Nicknamed "The Mayor," Trejo would guarantee that every Superstar and Diva yields to Triple H and Stephanie's rule … or faces dire physical consequences. — TOM HERRERA