Vince McMahon reportedly thought an Edge segment was the “worst thing in the world” – according to John Cena Sr, the father of WWE’s 16-time World Champion.
Speaking to Dr. Chris Featherstone on Sportskeeda Wrestling’s UnSKripted, John Cena Sr opened up about WWE CEO Vince McMahon’s reaction to the scene which saw Edge slap John Cena Sr in the face ahead of the Rater-R Superstar’s victory over Mr Hustle Loyalty Respect at SummerSlam 2006 to retain the WWE Championship.
“Vince McMahon thought that was the worst thing in the world. However, do you notice how much mileage they got out of that slap? ‘Cena’s down! Cena’s down! Cena’s down!’ And they just kept putting it on, putting it on, and it always shows up… I don’t care where it is, that slap has become ‘a hall of fame slap.’ Bang, Cena’s down.”
While Vince McMahon may not have been a fan, though, John Cena Sr himself spoke of his enjoyment at working with WWE Hall of Famer Edge.
“It worked out well. It was fun. I had a lot of fun doing it, but yeah, that’s something that wasn’t choreographed, I’ll tell you that. It was that, ‘You’re gonna slap me in the face.’ And I can tell you this, when he turned around and slapped me in the face, no choreography there, man, I took it.”
Edge told Inside The Ropes of his iconic slap on Cena Sr at an Inside The Ropes live show in November 2018.
“We go to West Newbury, Mass, and we go to John’s house where he grew up. Now, we’re doing this thing with John’s dad. John’s dad kind of goes with this old time, ‘Well, I’ve got to tell you, Edge, you better watch it with my son because he’s got some chutzpah,’ and really like he’s in a 1950s movie and I’m like ‘Oh, no, oh, no, this is bad. Oh, Lord, okay, all right, we’ll figure it out,’ so I slap him.”
The Rated-R Superstar’s recollection reveals how his hard slap came about as trying to “make it count” and legitimize the segment.
“We go to West Newbury, Mass, and we go to John’s house where he grew up. Now, we’re doing this thing with John’s dad. John’s dad kind of goes with this old time, ‘Well, I’ve got to tell you, Edge, you better watch it with my son because he’s got some chutzpah,’ and really like he’s in a 1950s movie and I’m like ‘Oh, no, oh, no, this is bad. Oh, Lord, okay, all right, we’ll figure it out,’ so I slap him.
“‘We’ll figure it out,’ so I smack him and I smack him hard, dude, it’s like, ‘Camera’s right there, I better make this count.'”
However, Edge got more than he bargained for, as he detailed how he went for a pizza in John Cena’s local area afterwards and got food poisoning – before having to work an entire match.
“Go to a pizza place after that in West Newbury, Mass, got food poisoning. Only time I’ve ever had to poisoning and I think somebody in Cena’s home town… I’m pretty sure they got me. And I then hop on Vince’s jet because I’ve got to make it down to a shouse show in like Hershey, Pennsylvania, and I’m wrestling John that night and we wrestle, wrestle, wrestle, the whole time I’m like, ‘Oh, God, I’m going to sh** myself. Oh, my Lord, here we go,’ I’m sweating so much. Clammy. ‘Can anybody tell I’m clenching my ass cheeks?’ Make it through a 25 minute match. I roll out, I’m like, ‘Oh, God,’ I roll up the apron. I puke up everywhere. I look over, there’s Lita. ‘Ha-ha-ha!’ Under the apron, just staring at me, I’m like, ‘You asshole!'”
Edge recalled Vince McMahon seeing the footage the next day, and how he had to speak over the entire dialogue.
“So, now we get to TVs the next day. This is RAW. Vince sees the Cena Sr footage, he goes, ‘God damn, that’s the worst thing ever seen. Oh, my God, this is horrible.’ He looks at Bruce Prichard. ‘Bruce, you produced this?! What the f***?!’ So, he goes, ‘Well, Adam, you’re just going to have to ad lib over this whole thing live.’ ‘What?!’ Sure enough, if you watch it back, I am ad-libbing everything live as it’s airing and you can still kinda hear the dialogue underneath, but I’m trying to talk over it. ‘Down goes Cena,’ all off the cuff.’ I’m like, ‘All right, I’ve got to come up with…’ ‘Down goes Cena, down goes Cena.’ Just trying to come up with anything – but yet, for whatever reason, people still come up to me and talk about that so somehow it worked. I don’t know how.”
Meanwhile, Jim Cornette recently compared Edge to a modern-day Ric Flair.