For the WWE fan, it seems like a dream to work for the company as a Superstar. What can be better than performing in front of millions on a weekly basis? What most of us don’t see however, is the life these wrestlers live outside of the squared circle. It isn’t all unicorns and rainbows, instead it’s a lot of travel, eating out, and spending a mere day or two at home on a weekly basis. The WWE is like a circus travelling the world with its performers.
Fan interaction is everything for the WWE. Fans invest lots of money into the company and without us, the WWE simply would not exist. As a token of their appreciation, the company loves to make their wrestlers give back to the fans with organized meet and greets. The key word there is ORGANIZED. Wrestlers are very nice when the situation is taken care of by the WWE, although the same cannot be said in others contexts. Superstars like their space and come off as very irritable if approached in other spaces, like an airport for example. Put yourself in their shoes, would you really be enthusiastic in meeting a fan after hours of travel? Probably not.
This article features some of the most awkward fan and wrestler altercations you’ll ever see. Without further ado, these are 15 candid pictures of fans meeting wrestlers the WWE doesn’t want you to see. Enjoy!
15 The Miz
Looking back at 2016, you'd find it hard to search for a wrestler that had a better year than The Miz. Before the brand split, it seemed like Miz was fading away and only hurting the prestige of the IC Championship. Well, after he joined SmackDown, that all changed and he became one of the greatest Intercontinental Champions in recent memory. With wife Maryse by his side, Miz’s heel work suddenly reached new heights and his feud with Daniel Bryan arguably became the feud of the year. Entering the company in 2004, Miz is currently enjoying the best spell of his career more than a decade later, truly remarkable for the 36 year old.
What’s interesting about The Miz is the fact that he loves to play a heel outside of the ring as well. Unlike his other co-workers, Miz plays the same role outside of the ring which only adds to the prestige of his character. This picture also proves that with Miz pulling a disgusted smile. Although he seems like a jerk out of the ring nowadays, he’s actually said to be a really cool dude when he’s not playing a gimmick.
14 The Shield
Usually, the goal of a faction is to create new stars. The WWE hit the nail on the head back in November of 2012 when they debuted the faction known as The Shield. The group featuring Seth Rollins, Dean Ambrose and Roman Reigns, took the WWE by storm. What made the trio so unique was how different they all were in terms of style. Like the WWE wanted, all three members would become huge stars for the company and would all enjoy separate WWE Championship Title reigns. You can expect the three to be in the spotlight for quite some time.
In terms of fan interaction, Seth and Dean aren’t the most social on the WWE roster. Seth has admitted that he hates being approached by fans at the airport, while Ambrose is a bit of a loner and also isn’t a huge fan of interacting with people in general. Roman on the contrary, has been said to be quite the gentleman when meeting fans in open situations. This picture however says otherwise, Roman and his Shield brothers don’t look too impressed. Keep in mind this came during a period which saw the group be one of the most worked acts in the entire company, working three to four shows a week on the regular. Given Roman’s current status in the company, surely the WWE doesn’t want you seeing this picture.
13 The New Day
Similar to the Shield, the goal of the New Day was to create new stars alongside the veteran Kofi Kingston, who was desperate for a career resurgence. Right off the bat, the crowd wasn’t buying the group and it seemed like their days were instantly numbered despite the talent with the group featuring Big E and Xavier Woods, two great prospects. Perhaps nobody could have predicted this, but the group would go on to absolutely thrive and become the long serving Tag Team Champions of all-time beating Demotion’s previous record which dated back 28 years ago. Without a doubt, the trio absolutely thrived and are continuing to do so.
Outside of the ring however, fans have mixed reviews about the trio. According to speculation and fan stories, the group seems uninterested when meeting the fans in a candid environment like the airport. This picture shows exactly that with Kofi looking none too pleased, Xavier Woods pulling a dreadful fake smile and Big E... well... being Big E.
12 Sasha Banks
Although she’s only 24, Sasha has been doing this for six years already. Travelling nonstop, you certainly have to believe that Banks has grown accustomed to the travelling life. She began with Chaotic wrestling back in 2010, and worked the Indie circuit at the same time gaining some valuable experience. In 2012, she was recruited by the WWE and like they say, the rest is history. Sasha would build a tremendous legacy for herself down in NXT and following that up by becoming one of the top stars on the main roster during the Women’s Revolution. Looking at her age, you can expect Sasha to stay at the very top for a long time.
Banks is said to be quite the sweetheart during meet and greets but the same cannot be said for candid interactions, especially the ones that take place in airports. Sasha is not a fan of people waiting around and invading her personal space, and she has made that very clear with some awful photos that went viral online of Banks pulling some not so glamorous faces. Big E took things a step further and made socks out of Sasha’s face from a picture a fan posted online of the two together. As you can expect, she wasn’t smiling!
At the age of 49, Kane’s WWE career is finally winding down but you have to believe he’ll be a part of the family for life. He made his debut with the company way back in 1995 and after bouncing around some awful gimmicks he finally struck gold as The Undertaker’s evil brother Kane, in 1997. With some minor alterations, the gimmick would last over a decade. He’d switch to a formal Authority member role in 2013 only to return to his old roots in 2015 dawning the epic mask. In terms of class and valued employee throughout the years, Kane is certainly at the top of the WWE ladder.
Within the company, Kane is an absolute class act and some even label him as the smartest man to ever step foot in the wrestling industry. However, the same cannot be said for his interactions with fans. Take nothing away from Kane, he respects his fans enough to take a picture after all these years but looking at some candid pictures online, he seems very uninterested when taking the photos. At the age of 49 and with two decades of WWE experience, Kane is one of the few that gets a pass on this list given his years of service.
10 Big Show
Speaking of long time WWE employees, Big Show is no slouch either. The giant has been a part of the wrestling industry since 1995 and joined the WWE in 1999 as a member of the Corporation. He sustained an up and down career but you must value his work ethic throughout his run with the big company. Like Kane, Big Show is set to call it a career very soon as the rumor mill indicates he’s set to retire following WrestleMania. You truly believe he’ll be a member of the WWE family for life given his extensive body of work throughout the years both in and out of the ring.
Big Show is said to be a class act outside of the ring but this particular fan catches him at an irritating moment. It’s probably better that the fan chose to take a picture from a distance instead of approaching the WWE star. Show is seen with John Cena in an airport as the two await the arrival of their delayed flight. You can only imagine how upset the two Superstars are, adding to that, a fan taking a picture from a distance of the situation. As you see in the picture, Big Show is not pleased.
9 Randy Orton
During his days in Ohio Valley Wrestling back in 2001, it was clear very quickly that Orton was going to be a huge star in the industry. Triple H clearly saw it as well and put Orton in the Evolution stable. Randy would grow into a massive star and won his first WWE Title at the tender age of 24 becoming the youngest Champion ever. He’d go on to achieve great things throughout his run which included 12 WWE World Heavyweight Championship reigns. To this very day, Orton remains an upper card player for the company.
His attitude outside the ring however hasn’t always been the greatest. Orton was said to be quite ruthless with his peers and deemed to be very immature. His fan interactions were also pretty bad, one incident in particular saw Orton call a fan Miss. Piggy after posting a picture of the two online. This was done because according to Orton, the fan was harassing his wife constantly. Whatever the case may be, he certainly could have handled it better. The picture above also shows Orton completely caught off guard by a fan taking a mirror selfie with the Viper. To make matters worse, he was wearing a Cena t-shirt. Is there an age restriction for fans he can RKO?
8 Chris Jericho
This hilarious image was posted by a fan and it went viral. The WWE fanbase proceeded to copy the picture onto several other photos and it created quite the buzz. One of the very best was cropping Jericho’s photo onto the iconic Beatles picture. It was absolute gold.
Like The Miz, Jericho is actually one of the coolest dudes in the business, however, when he’s a heel, Chris likes to keep things 100% outside of the ring. So like Miz, he plays a heel to fans out of the ring when he’s a heel on-screen.
At the age of 46, Jericho is not only still going strong but he’s regarded as one of the very best on the Raw show. Ever since the brand split, Jericho has taken his performance up a notch providing the flagship program with some must-see-TV content alongside his buddy and foe Kevin Owens. Although he’s getting older, we hope Y2J stays put for another couple of years.
7 Bray Wyatt
With wrestling in his bloodline, Wyatt joined the WWE back in 2009. He got the call up to the main roster joining The Nexus group and he quickly became a forgettable background player with a generic persona. Right off the bat, his days seemed numbered. What would happen next was truly remarkable, Wyatt would alter his entire persona down in NXT and he was quickly labelled as the next Undertaker of the generation. He’s sustained highs and lows since his new gimmick debuted in 2012, but we still believe a title is in his horizons at one point.
With such a dark character, it’s hard to keep that mystique especially nowadays with the social media presence larger than ever. In this picture, once again that mystique is broken with a fan getting in a picture with Wyatt. Although Bray is said to be a class act, we doubt the WWE wants fans seeing Wyatt out and about in candid settings.
This particular fan picked the wrong day to approach these WWE stars as most wrestlers don’t look too impressed when meeting the fan at the airport. Fandango is another one of those Superstars who seems less than enthused coming off a long haul flight. Just another example of why you shouldn’t approach wrestlers at airports unless it’s a total coincidence, then your good. But if you literally went there for a picture and autograph, chances are they won’t be too thrilled.
Believe it or not, Fandango has been with the WWE system for over a decade now joining Deep South Wrestling in 2006. He spent years in the WWE’s developmental territories and would finally debut onto the main roster in 2012. He’d fight his first match in April of 2013, something few can say defeating Chris Jericho. Unfortunately following the win, he couldn't sustain the push and it resulted into a lower card spot. Although his role seems minimal, Fandango is still an important player for the WWE Live shows and the Network as well. He also appears on SmackDown Live alongside his new partner Tyler Breeze.
5 Shawn Michaels
Known as the greatest professional wrestler to ever step foot in the squared circle, it’s safe to say HBK’s legacy will live on forever through the hearts and minds of wrestling fans all over the world. Oh, and the WWE Network will also help to make us remember those great moments.
Prior to his 2002 triumphant return, HBK’s legacy was kind of tainted. Although he was a stud in the 90s, Michaels wasn't all that well received behind the scenes. Shawn had a massive ego and he let it get in the way. That, along with drug use, tainted his legacy. He would ultimately return in 2002 and add an extra eight years to his legacy. As a Born Again Christian, Michaels was completely different this time around and became an absolute class act in and out of the ring.
Despite the fact that he’s gone from the WWE, he still travels a heck of a lot working various autograph signings, hunting trips and other projects. In this fan sighting, TMZ caught HBK with a fan who was a member of the New York Giants football team. Michaels was a class act but you can tell, he just wanted to sit down and get home after a long day of travelling. The video footage of the interaction is up online.
4 Brock Lesnar
Not too surprising to see Lesnar’s name on a list that deals with negative fan interactions. Brock himself has admitted time and time again that he isn’t a fan of people in general. This has caused numerous fans to probably think twice about approaching the beast.
Lesnar initially left the company back in 2004 because of travel conditions and the fact that he was constantly surrounded by people. Brock would make things right by moving as far as possible to Saskatchewan while working a limited WWE schedule which consists of private chartered flights. Looking at his current relationship with the company, it seems like he got everything he wanted. Lesnar also limits his conversations with wrestlers on the actual shows; he normally does his job and leaves immediately after.
This picture is yet another example of Lesnar looking uncomfortable in a meet and greet. This one was from a couple years back and the young fans looks traumatized. Even his buddy keeps a healthy distance throughout the experience.
3 The Undertaker
This fan picture of The Undertaker nearly broke the internet when it was posted. Surely, the WWE and The Undertaker were very displeased with the photo that made Taker look really old and weak. The photo went viral on various platforms and despite the context of the photo, it just showed how genuine of a class act Taker is after all these years. In terms of professionalism, Taker truly stands in a class of his own.
Following the end of his streak, it seems like the new speculation relates to his final WrestleMania. At the age of 51, you truly believe that time is coming with Undertaker being linked to a possible match against John Cena. Whatever the case might be, Calaway is looking fantastic nowadays and he proved that with his appearance on the SmackDown anniversary episode. He’s also hitting the gym quite hard with some footage of his impressive deadlifts making waves online.
2 Stone Cold & Kevin Owens
Breaking into the business in 2000, Kevin Owens became a journeyman on the Indie scene working all over the world. During his youth, he idolized both Shawn Michaels and Stone Cold Steve Austin. One day, Owens did something very few of us ever get to do, meet their idol. Owens met Austin back in 2005 at an airport. Although Steve looks angry in the photo, he gave Owens some tremendous advice that stuck with the Universal Champion to this day. Austin told Owens “keep running your mouth and never stop talking!” Those words stuck with KO and looking at him today, it seems obvious he still lives by that.
Years later, the two retook the picture, this time with Steve pulling a smile. Austin has stated he’s in fact a fan of Owens and credited the WWE for giving KO a Championship run. A pretty sweet redemption story for Owens, wouldn’t you say?
1 John Cena
We dug deep into the archives to find an angry fan interaction picture of John Cena and this truly was the best we could do. The guy seems flawless, although he does seem a little irritated in this picture taken early in his career. A picture also surfaced online of Cena looking pretty restless next to Big Show as the two awaited their delayed flights.
He’s been the face of the business since 2005 and there’s a reason why. The guy continues to be a constant pro out of the ring with the fans. In the ring, Cena lets his work ethic do the talking despite all the heat he generates. Looking at Roman Reigns today, it’s pretty clear he took Cena’s advice ignoring the crowds and improving on a daily basis. Cena remains the poster for the WWE and is going to remain in that position for quite some time.
Sources: givemesport.com, uproxx.com, tmz.com
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