Getting into the world of professional wrestling is a tough gig. A lot of people don’t give pro wrestlers the time of day due to it being scripted – well, the majority of moments are. But it’s a serious job. It’s not just about some people jumping around in the ring together. Wrestlers are on the road, away from their families for the majority of the year. They’ve got to train like professional athletes, and a lot of them have amazing physiques. You’ve got guys 250 plus pounds of muscle jumping off the top rope flying through the air like a bird, doing amazing athletic feats. If that’s not impressive we don’t know what is. But it all contributes to what is a pressure cooker of an environment. The majority of wrestlers who have been wrestling with the top promotions over the years are expected to put on a real show in the name of wrestling entertainment. Despite it being scripted, they all want to do well, achieve success, be loved by fans, and win titles.
Occasionally the lines between fiction and reality get blurred and things boil over. There have been numerous instances of wrestlers having real enmity towards each other. Feuds in the ring translate to real life feuds backstage and vice versa. There have been a lot of big personalities in wrestling. These people who display such a great deal of arrogance often find themselves being loners in the locker rooms. Some are just generally not very nice people and those negative aspects of their personalities become exacerbated due to the environment they find themselves in in the world of wrestling. On the other side of the coin, there are those that people naturally gravitate towards, individuals who have come into the locker rooms and are instantly a hit. Here are 10 of those individuals and 10 wrestling stars who have made multiple enemies backstage.
20 MADE MULTIPLE ENEMIES: HULK HOGAN
Hulk Hogan’s an American wrestling icon. What he’s achieved in the industry is just ridiculous and has contributed to him achieving legendary status in the industry. He’s a guy who put wrestling on the map, and successfully used wrestling as a stepping stone to get into other ventures. Due to the love he’s received from fans over the years, many would think he received the same amount of love backstage. But as we are sure the Hulkster would testify, you don’t get to that level without stepping on a few toes. That’s precisely what Hulk Hogan did and he was hated backstage because of it. He had a terrible backstage reputation, particular in the 80s and 90s.
He ruled the roost in the industry at that point, and what he said went. The success got to his head, and it was inevitable that it would, having that sort of clout.
As Whatculture has reported, his ego was out of control and he basically did what he wanted to do. For example, he’d agree to put over talent, such as Shawn Michaels and Ric Flair, then refuse or change plans because he didn’t feel like it at the last minute. He made a couple of enemies in them. Scott Steiner and Bret Hart are a couple of others who dislike the Hulkster.
19 EVERYONE LOVES: THE ROCK
The Rock was known as the People’s Champion for a reason. From day one, since he followed in the footsteps of his father, he enamored himself to the crowds to wrestling fans everywhere. That’s because of his attitude, wrestling ability, athletic prowess, and skills as an actor, playing to a script.
Dwayne The Rock Johnson wasn’t just the People’s Champion. He was loved by pretty much everyone in the locker rooms too.
Most people, when they become massive names and get to the top, develop a massive ego, are arrogant and treat other guys like dirt. The Rock was never like that. He had no problems putting guys over. He even lost to Hurricane. Mick Foley is one of his best buddies in wrestling and will testify what a great dude The Rock is. Mick's waxed lyrical about his mate to the likes of Rolling Stone. He’s just respectful, treats everyone well regardless of their experience in the business, and is willing to help talent out.
18 MADE MULTIPLE ENEMIES: BATISTA
Batista achieved such a massive amount of fame and popularity when he was in the industry. A large part of that was because he’s a genetic freak. He came to the ring and just had an awe-inspiring physique, left people mesmerized. The mass monster was a decent wrestler too. But many think he wasn’t that good, wasn’t as good as his title haul suggested. The fact he got so many opportunities and big matches caused bewilderment amongst fans, and plenty of jealousy and hate backstage.
As he grew in popularity and size, so did his ego. He threw his weight around backstage and played to his own tune. This angered plenty of people, including Booker T, AJ Styles and Alberto Del Rio.
They aren’t exactly his biggest fans. According to Bleacher Report, there aren’t many who were in the WWE locker rooms. Even the fans gave him a tough time when he returned. Stirring up controversy, getting on people’s backs seemed to be one of his favorite pastimes. It wasn’t just the character he was portraying. He enjoyed rubbing people the wrong way in real life too.
17 EVERYONE LOVES: ROSA MENDES
Rosa Mendes didn’t really achieve anything of note during the course of her wrestling career. Despite that, she was one of the most popular female wrestlers around, loved by fans and all those backstage too. Firstly, one of the reasons she was thought of so highly, is because she was one of the most beautiful women on the roster. Secondly, she had a personality just perfectly suited to life in wrestling. She’s a headstrong woman with a very vibrant personality. We saw a lot of her when she was one of the main cast members on the reality TV series, Total Divas. It’s little wonder she featured so much on the show. When she retired from in-ring action, she became a correspondent and began working backstage. That meant she had to get on with everyone, and she didn’t have any trouble there.
A lot of divas get cut from the roster after a few years as their promotions feel the need to move with the times, and get fresh talent on board. That didn’t happen to Rosa, demonstrating how highly people thought of her.
As Wrestlinginc.com has reported, she got to walk away on her own terms, retired from the industry, and when she did, plenty of people, including Paige, Natalya, and pretty much the whole roster, were sad to see her go.
16 MADE MULTIPLE ENEMIES: LEX LUGER
When Lex Luger arrived on the scene, he was being molded into the next Hulk Hogan. That didn’t sit well with too many people. Just a couple of weeks after making his debut, he was already winning titles. Understandably, that angered a lot of people backstage who felt he hadn’t paid his dues. There was a lot of jealousy there. But Lex didn’t help himself. He was put on the path to greatness by those at the helm of his promotions, and this inflated his ego massively. He was arrogant beyond belief, and this attitude rubbed plenty of people up the wrong way.
Now that he’s older, Lex has admitted that he felt he had a sense of entitlement and therefore didn’t have to follow all the rules. He's said as much to a number of different people in many YouTube videos. He couldn’t separate the man from the image, and that and the fact he got sucked into the high life, the partying lifestyle which involved substance abuse, didn’t help matters. Lex made multiple enemies and recognizes his wrongdoings. Now that he’s older, he’s on the road to redemption.
15 EVERYONE LOVES: THE UNDERTAKER
The Undertaker’s regarded to be the greatest wrestler of all time. Numerous polls, such as those conducted by EWrestlingNews put him ahead of the likes of The Rock and Hulk Hogan. All you had to do was see the outpouring of emotion from the wrestling world after his defeat to Roman Reigns, when he announced his retirement after 27 years, placing his iconic hat, gloves and trench coat in the ring.
The fact that The Undertaker was at the helm of the industry for over a quarter of a century says it all. You don’t last that long if you have multiple enemies. Eventually you’ll get kicked out. That was never going to happen to The Undertaker. He’s like a father figure to a lot of wrestlers backstage.
He’s unique and mysterious and pretty wacky too. There are plenty of stories which showcase his wild and wacky ways. But one of the main reasons he was loved is because of how he treated everyone. He had time for everyone backstage, would give out advice, and knew when it was their time to shine. He let The Rock go over on him because he knew it was The Rock’s era. There aren’t many people with The Undertaker’s clout who’d be willing to do that.
14 MADE MULTIPLE ENEMIES: NEW JACK
New Jack is regarded to be one of the most hated wrestlers of all time. He was hated by one and all, due to his attitude and antics in the ring and out. A lot of pro wrestlers put on an attitude and adopt a persona and act crazy in the ring. But people are of the opinion that New Jack didn’t adopt a persona; the guy did actually act the way he did in the ring. It’s actually amazing that he’s still in the industry. Due to what he’s done over the years, you’d have thought he would’ve been blacklisted. Plenty of the stuff he’s done could and should have landed him in prison. But because it was in the ring, he didn’t face felony charges. There are numerous incidents of note; these are some of the worst.
He’s known for that notorious incident when he hit a 17-year-old rookie incorrectly and he almost lost his life because of it. He’s admitted on YouTube and to ProfessionalWrestlingStories.com to actually harming people in the ring. Why he’s still allowed to wrestle is anybody’s guess.
13 EVERYONE LOVES: REY MYSTERIO
Rey Mysterio might not be the most popular guy amongst the management at WWE. They’ve had to iron out a few issues over the years. But they certainly appreciate what Rey Mysterio is all about, the love he has from all corners of the wrestling world, and the amazing athletic feats he’s able to pull off in the ring. That’s why he’s been asked back, and made a surprise appearance to WWE at the 2018 Royal Rumble. He told ESPN he'd be open to coming back into the mix permanently.
Rey Mysterio is just a straight-up honest guy. He’s always in good spirits, and just loves living the wrestling life. That cheery persona has endeared him to plenty of people backstage. His peers just appreciate his attitude.
When it comes to the fans, there are very few who are as popular as Rey Mysterio. He always interacts with fans ringside, especially the younger fans who are wearing the iconic Rey Mysterio masks. Seeing their faces light up when Mysterio chats with them makes you go a little warm and fuzzy inside.
12 MADE MULTIPLE ENEMIES: PAIGE
It’s amazing to think that Paige is only 25. She’s seemingly been around forever – well, she did start out in wrestling in 2005. Since those early days she’s managed to achieve worldwide fame with WWE and become the youngest Diva Champion in history. But it hasn’t all been plain sailing. She’s violated WWE’s Wellness Policy a couple of times and hasn’t done much wrestling in the past few years due to injury. A lot of people would’ve hoped that would mean Paige wouldn’t be around backstage. Unfortunately for them she’s still on the circuit. Her marriage to Alberto Del Rio didn’t help matters in terms of her relationship with the management and the rest of the roster. He’s not exactly the most loved figure in WWE circles. But it’s just Paige’s general attitude that has alienated a lot of people backstage.
She’s a young, strong, headstrong woman who isn’t afraid to speak her mind. We’ve seen this on Total Divas.
Paige has made enemies out of Charlotte Flair, The Miz, Stephanie McMahon, Lana, Brad Maddox and the list just goes on and on. According to Whatculture, Paige is one of the most hated divas on the circuit.
11 EVERYONE LOVES: TRISH STRATUS
Trish Stratus is undoubtedly the most popular diva of her era. There’s no one worthier of Hall Of Fame recognition than Trish Stratus. When she started out, she was a part-timer. People didn’t think she’d amount to anything in the ring. Boy, did she prove them wrong. She wanted the success more than the other divas on the roster. She got there because of her willingness to go above and beyond the call of duty.
What’s remarkable about that is that she didn’t need to step on any toes in the process of her reaching success. No one has anything but nice things to say about Trish.
It’s fair to say she was humiliated a number of times during her career, because she was around at a time when women were on the roster basically to be eye candy – but Trish gave fans many memorable moments and still left with her head held high. She didn’t change backstage either, as a result of which she left with many friends, which as listed by Bleacher Report, include Ashley Massaro, Mickie James, and her best buddy, Lita.
10 MADE MULTIPLE ENEMIES: AJ LEE
A lot of people might think that AJ Lee was hated and made multiple enemies simply because of her relationship with CM Punk. Punk alienated pretty much everyone on the roster in WWE, which included the management and his fellow competitors. AJ, who was dating Punk and subsequently married him, was of course by his side and had to stick up for him as he was going through all of his hardships. In that sense, she was hated by association. But aside from that, she gave off the impression that she felt she was far superior to others on the roster. She refused to do storylines and partake in controversial angles, as she's admitted to WWEInsiders.com, and didn’t let certain individuals go over on her. After multiple conflicts with those at the helm of WWE and plenty of wrestlers backstage, it was inevitable that she was going to bow out, which she did. We doubt she’ll be invited back in the future.
9 EVERYONE LOVES: BIG SHOW
Initially that big man gimmick just didn’t work out. Promotions had to get creative because Big Show was quickly becoming the laughing stock of the wrestling world. His character took to mimicking other wrestlers, but it didn’t work out. People thought he’d just be another big man who’d look the part but wouldn’t amount to anything in the ring. How things changed. As the decades rolled by, Big Show has gone on to establish himself as a legend of the ring. One of the world’s biggest athletes has also established himself as one of the nicest guys too.
He may seem like a seriously mean, imposing figure, like a big brute of a man, but in reality, he’s just a big cuddly bear. The veteran of wrestling wants to ensure the industry he loves is in good hands. That’s why, as reported by Sportskeeda, he’s gone about trying to create harmony behind the scenes.
He’s the father figure of the group, the guy people feel comfortable going to for words of wisdom. We’ve seen him dish out plenty over the years and help those who are coming through the ranks. Just watch Total Divas; he’s made a number of appearances on that show, helping out male and female wrestlers, giving them advice, and helping to steady their nerves.
8 MADE MULTIPLE ENEMIES: MELINA
Melina Perez is a diva who received plenty of backstage heat during her time with WWE. For the most part, you’ve got to say that it was warranted. She was a diva with one heck of an attitude. Even during her initial period with WWE, she thought she was above everyone else. She thought nothing of disrespecting the most loved diva on the roster at the time, Trish Stratus. Understandably that angered a lot of people. Melina began dating John Morrison, who wasn’t on the best of terms with Trish. The couple ganged up on the champion. Sure, that was a storyline, but there was real life beef there too.
According to SportsKeeda, she disrespected other superstars during her time with the promotion too. Her ego was out of control, and stories of backstage beef between Melina and other wrestlers were constantly making the rounds.
There are numerous stories about how Melina wasn’t approachable, that she was far too big for her boots. It’s remarkable she lasted as long as she did.
7 EVERYONE LOVES: XAVIER WOODS
Xavier Woods has had a decent time of it since entering the wrestling industry. He started off in NWA Anarchy, before moving to TNA and eventually getting his big break as a member of the New Day with WWE. That’s where he really made a name for himself, acquired a substantial fan following. He hasn’t just acquired his fans due to his prowess in the ring.
Xavier Woods is all about having fun and enjoying life on the road as a wrestler. The guy is never without a smile plastered across his face. That attitude has endeared him to a lot of fans and his fellow competitors in the locker room.
It’s refreshing to see someone in wrestling live like Xavier Woods, and it’s certainly a welcome change. You’ve only got to watch his YouTube channel, UpUpDownDown, to get an idea of how popular he is. He’s welcomed a whole host of stars on his show, and gets them to let down their guards, show the fans the non-kayfabe side of their personalities. There aren’t many who could get the likes of Tyler Breeze, The Miz and Nikki Bella to open up and let their real personalities show.
6 MADE MULTIPLE ENEMIES: BROCK LESNAR
First of all, it’s important to note that Brock Lesnar is very serious about his wrestling. He’s not there to have fun, or to have a laugh and see what happens. He’s always wanted to be the major drawcard at wrestling events, sees the industry as a business, and is obsessed with raking in as much cash as possible. He’s been open about how that’s what he cares about the most, how big his bank balance is. And Brock’s the type of guy who’ll do anything to make it grow and grow. That money-hungry attitude hasn’t sat well with a lot of people. He’s also had a few rifts here and there and is deemed to be selfish and arrogant. But a major reason as to why he’s not exactly liked backstage is because he’s treated differently. Brock doesn’t have a great attitude but there’s a bit of jealously there too.
Brock, being a major drawcard, doesn’t have to work as hard as others on the roster. He picks his dates and chooses his events while other wrestlers are on the road most of the year working day in day out.
Brock has held his hands up and has said to MMAFighting.com that his substance abuse problems meant he wasn’t exactly a pleasant guy to be around. But although he’s kicked the habit, it seems as if his history hasn’t been forgotten.
5 EVERYONE LOVES: KANE
It’s amazing how long Kane’s been wrestling in the industry. He’s been around for a quarter of a century and has become one of the most loved wrestlers around. It used to be the case that people of his age who’ve been around for his length of time in the business, were massively arrogant and hated by everyone. Kane’s stayed clear of that trend. Initially he was trying all sorts of gimmicks, some of them truly dire. He soon found one that worked, and has stuck with it ever since.
Kane is a gentle giant. As part of his wrestling persona he may have done some rather whacky things over the years. But he’s far from like that in real life. Backstage, Kane, a.k.a. Glenn Jacobs, is a real gent. He’s a businessman and politician, so evidently knows how to get on with people and establish connections.
According to SportsKeeda he’s seriously humble, is considered one of the industry’s sweethearts. There’s no one who’s got a bad word to say about him, even after 25 years in the business. CM Punk, one of the most hated guys in wrestling, someone who everyone hates and someone who hates everyone, has even been full of praise for Kane. That’s saying something, demonstrates the amount of respect Kane demands.
4 MADE MULTIPLE ENEMIES: CHYNA
Step on the toes of the bosses’ family and you’re asking for trouble. That’s what Chyna ended up doing, and in the end, she had no choice but to leave WWE.
The late Chyna will always be remembered as a wrestling great. She achieved legendary status in the industry. She was an iconic presence, one of the biggest female wrestlers around. She may have looked big, imposing and menacing. But out the ring she was a real darling. That was until she succumbed to personal issues. Chyna went down a dark path, and during this time she made an enemy out of pretty much everyone. As divulged by E! News she was involved in a nasty debacle with Triple H and Stephanie McMahon. Things got complicated, and in the end, due to WWE looking to take female wrestling into a different direction, and due to her attitude and increasingly erratic behavior, she was eventually let go.
3 EVERYONE LOVES: SETH ROLLINS
Seth Rollins is all about wrestling, and just loves the WWE. This passion and his commitment to the industry and everything it involves comes across. Fans love him for it because it’s resulted in some memorable moments over the years. Numerous wrestlers have praised him too because of his dedication to the cause.
If you love what you’re doing, make your work your passion and go about it with a smile across your face, that attitude is going to rub off on your co-workers.
The likes of Jim Ross, Shawn Michaels and Sting haven’t been shy in their praise for Seth Rollins. Sting has actually said to WWE.com that Seth is the best he’s ever worked with, that he’s just a great guy all round and is still yet to reach his full potential. Judging from the wise words of Sting, Seth’s certainly on the right path – it’s scary to think that he still has more left in the tank.
2 MADE MULTIPLE ENEMIES: CHARLOTTE FLAIR
Charlotte Flair was never going to be the most popular diva. Due to her family name, their wrestling pedigree, she’s found herself between a rock and a hard place. Whatever she does, people are going to be making constant comparisons between her and her dad, who incidentally is also one of the most hated people in wrestling, someone who also has multiple enemies in the industry. If she does well, people are going to say she’s used her connections to get to the top, that she hasn’t paid her dues. She’s not exactly popular backstage for that reason alone. It’s this resentment, and a tad of jealousy that’s resulted in her having multiple enemies. Charlotte knows this too. She's said as much to Diva-Dirt.com. She’s also a strong woman and that type of attitude has gotten on people’s backs. Charlotte hasn’t really done anything wrong. Despite that, for the reasons just mentioned, she’s still one of the most hated women in the women’s division.
1 EVERYONE LOVES: MICKIE JAMES
Mickie James certainly doesn’t look like the grizzled hardened veteran of the industry that she is. She’s still doing her thing, is still the same old Mickie, and for everyone in the world of wrestling, that’s a great thing.
Mickie is a woman who has plenty of experience and has certainly paid her dues. But she’s a woman who will throw herself wholeheartedly into any storyline, including angles that can only be described as mean-spirited, such as the Piggy James debacle.
But Mickie has always pulled off any role to perfection. She is one of the industry’s most loved performers, top professionals. She’s had a bit of beef with WWE, but not with the competitors. Most wrestlers have nothing but glowing praise about Mickie. Due to her status as a veteran, she’s seen as an older sister to a lot of the roster. The younger female wrestlers look up to her, use her as a mentor, and Mickie’s happy to oblige. Bayley for example has tweeted, “Being able to talk to Mickie James about her days with Trish Stratus is pretty cool.” She’s also great friends with Lita and Trish Stratus who she enjoyed many storylines with over the years.