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Stone Cold Steve Austin Talks John Cena In The WWE Attitude Era

WWE.com recently tackled a fun hypothetical question. How would John Cena fare in the Attitude Era? Who better to ask than the king of the Attitude Era himself, Stone Cold Steve Austin.

[adinserter block=”1″]The Texas Rattlesnake has done a lot of media over the last several months promoting the WWE 13 video game. The video game concept is to recreate the Attitude Era with your favorite stars of the era along with the current WWE superstars. The concept of mixing and matching has been the driving marketing campaign and it would appear that THQ and the WWE are making one last push to close out 2012.

Steve Austin was interviewed on WWE.com about the game and the Attitude Era. The interview is fantastic but there is one snippet that is most interesting to fans of today and the era. Austin talks John Cena and how the future WWE Hall of Famer would do in Austin’s era.

John Cena in The Attitude Era. Man, that’s a good question.

Yeah, had he been placed in it, and been dealt with accordingly, the John Cena you see now — the face of the franchise, the leader of the pack? Not so much. But I guarantee if you’d have gotten him face to face with “Stone Cold” in an interview, and you know John cuts a good interview himself, if I slapped the s*** out of that son of a b****, I think we’re off and running to make a lot of money.

All he needs is to be poked and prodded in the right way. I think John Cena has a hell of a lot of fire and he needs to be in the ring with the right opponent, or the right cat, to bring that out. So in the current environment, you really don’t see that in him.

Place [Cena] back 10 years in the ring with “Stone Cold”? You’d have rung the cash register, big time.

Austin seems to be excited about Cena’s prospects back in the Attitude Era. Austin has also been asked similar questions about CM Punk and offered similar answers. Well, what else do you expect him to say? But how do you really think Cena would have done in that era?

I think that Cena would have wound up as a big heel. Cena would have been just as booed in the era as he is now. The difference is that the booking was more edgy and the WWE were in a war with WCW. Instead of forcing the square peg into a hole I think Cena would have been turned heel and would have done monster business against babyfaces like Austin and The Rock in the era.

[adinserter block=”2″]I also think Cena would have eventually turned back and been a top babyface. There was something about that era in which the babyfaces had to earn the respect of the fans before they got cheered. Just ask The Rock why Rocky Maivia was booed out of the building. If you think about it, there are a lot of parallels that can be drawn between the Maivia and Cena characters. Someone like Punk on the other hand probably would have flourished.

Regardless we’ll never know but it is a fun question to think about it.

[amazon_link id=”B005FWO3OM” target=”_blank” container=”” container_class=”” ]Stone Cold Steve Austin: The Bottom Line on the Most Popular Superstar of All Time[/amazon_link]

[amazon_link id=”B008WAM2N8″ target=”_blank” container=”” container_class=”” ]WWE Attitude Era DVD[/amazon_link]

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3 COMMENTS

  1. I have a question for you Eric. I consider you a respectable person whose views on the wrestling business, both inside and out, are legit (Because you've worked for one, if I'm not mistaken). Why is it more difficult to make a face character than a heel one?

    I've noticed several wrestlers unleash their best when playing a bad guy. Is it because of the fact it's easier being bad than good (for most people) or because people like villains overall in fictional media?
    Also, why does every single babyface today have to be a suck up? In both WWE and TNA today (or for quite some time) faces who suck up to the fans are rarely taken as seriously as tweeners or faces who retain their heel-ish traits, just not evil. Look at what it did for guys like Austin and Rock. After Maivia became The Rock, he never looked back and remained the same Rock for quite some time, with his heel-ish traits. The only quirky things he had (before his Grade A Hollywood hell run) was his reliance on his catchphrases. As for Austin, the only time he experienced major changes to his character was when he turned heel and joined Vince. This does not include his run as The Alliance Champion or when he joined Triple H. My point is, top faces (except Foley) hardly sucked up to the fans in an annoying way like they do today. Either that, or I need a history lesson.

    This brings me to my next question concerning Cena. IMO, his main problem is (Besides the refusal of changing his character) is the fact WWE won't stop shoving him down our throats in main event segment after main event segment when he sometimes has no reason to be in the main event segment of RAW or a PPV. How big is the profit revenue in regards to women and children compared to teenage and adult men anyway?
    Why won't WWE change him if he really doesn't bring that much money? Unless the teenage and adult men would pay plenty just to see him lose.

    I doubt you'll answer this question due to how long it is, but I'd be grateful if you at least read it for laughs, because I bet you've heard this babble "Only a million times grandfather".. Fictional $100 if you can guess that reference.

    • I think because everyone loves the bad guys. Bad guys are "cool" and babyfaces are corny. So you have to work really hard to find that balance of being a cool babyface. Austin, Rock, Hunter, Undertaker and even Punk to an extent can do it. The thing with Cena is that he is a mega merchandise seller so he is a successful babyface in that regard. And believe it or not he does move the needle in regards to RAW ratings.

      • Silly me. How could I have forgotten his infamous "Merch Powers"…although they have failed him twice this year.

        Ah. Makes sense that bad guys exude coolness from the get-go…if the wrestler can get himself over as a heel, that is. Poor Matt Bloom never could get a break.

        You don't get $100.

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