John Cena Reveals The First Thing Vince McMahon Ever Told Him

John Cena confronts Kurt Angle on WWE SmackDown 2002

John Cena and Vince McMahon currently have a strong working relationship, but Cena remembers his first meeting with the Chairman, who shared his simple request.

John Cena made an instant impact upon debuting on WWE’s main roster in June 2002, taking Kurt Angle to the limit on the 27 June SmackDown broadcast. Even though he lost to the WWE Hall of Famer, Cena left a lasting impression that set him up for superstardom.

Cena’s working relationship with Vince McMahon has benefitted his career, both in and out of the ring, which has allowed him to become the megastar he is today. Initially, however, the WWE Chairman was puzzled at what, exactly, to do with the then-OVW prospect.

In the midst of #CenaMonth to celebrate twenty years since his WWE debut, John Cena has reflected on said debut on an edition of WWE Playback. ‘The Doctor of Thuganomics’ recalled the first thing said to him by Vince (h/t Fightful):

“I found out at 2:45 in the afternoon that I’d be wrestling Kurt Angle. I had one meeting with Mr McMahon before this, and I was pushed into his office and Michael Hayes asked like, ‘What do we do with this?’, and Mr McMahon’s first sentence to me, it was a short meeting. He said, ‘Cut his f*cking hair’, and then I was out of the office.”

John Cena and Vince McMahon now have one of the closest relationships within WWE upper management, with McMahon allegedly meaning more to John than “anyone could realise” (h/t Bleacher Report):

“Vince McMahon to me is more than anyone could realise. He’s a close friend, a mentor, a father figure. He means a tremendous amount to me. I don’t know if I’ll ever be able to conceptualize how much I love him and how much he means to me.”

John Cena has now been announced to be returning to WWE programming on the 27 June edition of Monday Night Raw. A report from the Wrestling Observer Newsletter’s Dave Meltzer notes that Cena is expected to face Theory come SummerSlam, marking Cena’s first televised in-ring outing since last year’s SummerSlam.

Cena had previously returned to WWE at Money In The Bank last July, confronting Roman Reigns. He’d not been seen since losing to The Fiend in the critically-acclaimed Firefly Fun House match at WrestleMania 36.