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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Babble aside the general consensus is that the big three of wrestling popularity/icons are Hogan, Austin, and The Rock. Each superstar has a unique title to the claim. Hogan more or less is viewed as the man who made wrestling mainstream and huge in the 80's and 90's. Austin is viewed at the man and biggest draw of the attitude era. The Rock is viewed more or less as Austin's main rival in popularity, and is wrestling's biggest and most successful crossover star thus far. When these stars were on top, ratings were mega huge, merchandise flew off shelves. Catchphrases and mannerisms associated with these three have entered the American conscious. Non wrestling fans know what "gimme a hell yeah" is from. Yesterday i heard someone who i knew doesn't watch wrestling say to someone "stop using the people's eyebrow." Hulk Hogan needs no clarification because EVERYONE knows who he is.

Has JOHN CENA entered these heights? Should he now be mentioned with wrestling's mainstream Trifecta? Is it the big 4 instead of the big three? What does everyone think?

When thinking of competition, boom periods, crossover success...The answer imo is no. However, that's not Cena's fault because wrestling is in a down period compared to other years. But all of those things considered and bias aside, he's the closest we'll get in this era.

Truly in my mind it goes like this

(No order for top 3)

Hogan
Austin
Rock

Andre The Giant



Cena

(everyone else,but the rest of the top ten is another discussion)
 

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Hi.

The more I think about it, the more I think he can be included in that list. Granted, the Cena era isn't as big as the Hulkamania era or Austin/attitude era, but the Wrestlemania's in the Cena era took in more money than the previous era, and I believe they're were some records set. (I'll look more into that for clarification)

He's also very big in the mainstream world, when you compare him to a guy like Rock who went into mainstream and had moderate success, I'd say Cena has established himself as the man of the decade when it comes to popularity, mainstream success and drawing power.
 

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I don't know what it is but I personally just don't rank him alongside those guys yet. He probably is there but for some reason I just never really include him with the likes of those guys, and I actually like Cena so it's not me being biased or a mark or whatever.

I'll probably think of him as being in their league after a couple more years of him being on top.
 

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John Cena is this era's HBK/Bret Hart,the face of the company in a down period

But Cena should and will be considered part of the big four. Who doesn't know what an FU is? What about the "You can't see me" stuff? He's as mainstream as those three
 

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John Cena is this era's HBK/Bret Hart,the face of the company in a down period
I don't know about all that. For one he's way more popular than they were at their times, (even if Cena has more outlets to popularity), and also WWE's merchandise sales and Mania rates have been good over the last few years. It's really just viewership that is down from the earlier parts of the decade, and last decade.
 

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John Cena is this era's HBK/Bret Hart,the face of the company in a down period

But Cena should and will be considered part of the big four. Who doesn't know what an FU is? What about the "You can't see me" stuff? He's as mainstream as those three
That "You Can't See me" stuff has been going on long before Cena started using it.
 

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Cena is the biggest guy in wrestling today, but those three were the biggest guys around when wrestling was booming and when the talent pool was incredibly competitive. Cena is more like an upper-midcarder/mainevent jobber compared to those guys. I never heard of Cena until I started watching wrestling actively again whereas Austin and especially Rock are known by literally everyone.
 

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I'll be fucking honest. GIVEN the wrestling climate TODAY...with PG. With nickelodeon, make a wish, albums, action figures, tv shows, 2 movies, and being a global name and brand. Id say CENA has eclipsed those wrestlers named above. And I say this because he easily has another 20 years left in the tank. Hogan hit his prime when he was aged. Rock hit his prime as he was leaving the business into acting. Austin hit his prime but was banged up. Any signs of Cena's reign ending ? NO!

GREEN REP THE SHIT OUT OF THIS POST BECAUSE ITS THE TRUTH, THE WHOLE TRUTH AND NOTHING BUT THE ?????
 

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i think he's in the league with Undertaker Bret Hart and HBK. Although like HBK ,WWE will want him to be remembered as the biggest star ever. For me he's never had a feud like a Austin Rock or McMahon feud to really get the crowd behind him and to be honest name me any great moments that rank up with Austins, Rocks or Hogans greatest moments.

I like him but he's no way in the same league as the big three.
 

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I think he is there, people may doubt it now but when it's all said and done, after he eventually has one of the biggest heel tuns of all time and by the time his career his done I think he will be third, above Rock and third to Austin and Hogan.
 

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Its still the big 3. Cena has no where near the main stream appeal of the greats. However I would rank it Hogan, Rock, and then Stone Cold. Rock appealed to a greater range of people. A wider ethnic background. Lots of white fans loved Stone Cold, but Rock brought in black, hispanic, and other viewers to WWE. Also Rock brought in tons of women who never saw any appeal to wrestling.
 

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Not yet. In terms of popularity, sales, mainstream appeal, etc John Cena has reached the level of these guys. But it won't be until he leaves that we will look at him with our rose-tinted glasses of nostalgia. His legacy is certainly ready but his departure will be the thing that cements it.

Also The Rock is not on their level. He fits nicely into the Undertaker/Randy Savage/Batista group of second fiddles. Just because he was popular and made some nice poopy jokes doesn't mean anyone can say he had the kind of impact Hogan, Austin, and soon enough Cena have had on wrestling.
 

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I think once Cena finally gets a role in mainstream movie that gets him more exposure to the public than I can say he'll join the ranks of those three.

Hogan and Rock have been in memorable movies while Austin is still struggling to make it in Hollywood.

- Vic
 

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I just took a poll w/ my family here in the living room.
I said the word "wrestling" and asked for the first name that came to their mind.

Father: Hulk Hogan
Mother: Undertaker
Sister: Hulk Hogan
Friend: Hulk Hogan
 

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Discussion Starter · #17 ·
Not yet. In terms of popularity, sales, mainstream appeal, etc John Cena has reached the level of these guys. But it won't be until he leaves that we will look at him with our rose-tinted glasses of nostalgia. His legacy is certainly ready but his departure will be the thing that cements it.

Also The Rock is not on their level. He fits nicely into the Undertaker/Randy Savage/Batista group of second fiddles. Just because he was popular and made some nice poopy jokes doesn't mean anyone can say he had the kind of impact Hogan, Austin, and soon enough Cena have had on wrestling.
I respectfully disagree man. There's no way the Rock fits in that category with Undertaker, Savage, and Tista...infact The Rock's name next to Batista is an insult. Not only is the rock on that level, i can make the argument he's above it, but that's another discussion. I don't like Austin at all, but i'm not gonna deny his greatness. I was just looking at past matches and clips of the rock from 98 to 2002 and the reactions felt like a dream land. Dude's pops make Cena's army of kids and ladies look minuscule (it's not even an argument).

Rock

Biggest salary for a debut actor ever (record still holds today)
Top 20 hip hop hit with Wyclef Jean (it doesn't matter), a hip hop superstar who recorded it with the cause his son was a fan.
Political conventions....

Hell Vh1 had a top 200 American POP ICON list...and while the list was flawed, they decided to put THE ROCK (should've been Hogan) as the ONLY wrestler on the list back in 2003. He was number 200, but the point is that's how POPULAR he was with the mainstream.

Most of the rocks movies have made back their budget (Scorpion King, The Rundown) and has actually headlined those movies and wasn't in an ensemble cast (though he will be in Fast Five, which has a shot at 100 million)

Dude was featured in Vanity Fair (usually features stars like Angelina Jolie, Johnny Deep).

I could list more but i'm sure that's enough. He's clearly still the biggest crossover star in wrestling history. And the scary thing is it took a short amount of time. The biggest thing against it is he decided to leave (smart decision). Trust me on this, if Rock hadn't left, John Cena WOULD NOT be as big (but we can't say that, cause it didn't happen). At least the rock's success heated up in 99 when STONE COLD was the biggest wrestling star in the US.

Cena, other than straight to DVD movies, TV appearances (every wrestler has those, sorry), and a Modest selling CD bought by diehards doesn't hold a candle to the rock, yet. That could change because it looks like Cena isn't going to leave wrestling.

The Rock crossover appeal in 1999-2001 > Cena's career thus far.
 

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Not quite. I think it's because wrestling is in such a down time. But wrestling was down before Hogan came, and look what he did to it. Wrestling was also down in the early 90's after Hogan left, and look what Austin and The Rock did. I think Cena has to bring it back up in popularity to be considered on the same level as those guys.
 
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