WWE Legend John Cena Explains Why His In-Ring Retirement Will Be Permanent

Retirement announcements should always be taken with a pinch of salt in the world of pro wrestling. Most performers get the bug again and return for one more match, as evidenced by "Stone Cold" Steve Austin beating Kevin Owens at WWE WrestleMania 38 and countless other examples. That said, John Cena has revealed that he'll embark on his retirement tour in 2025, and he'll hang up his boots for good after it's all said and done.

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"I want to set the record straight right now — I'm done. This is it," Cena told the WWE Money in the Bank post-show press conference. "But the reason I'm saying that is not because 'I'm over it, I'm done.' I just want to send the message to our fans like if you ever wanted to be a part of this one last time, we are gonna do it as big as we can, and we're inviting everybody, and we hope you come and enjoy the fun and enjoy show."

Cena noted that he's picked a great time to hang up his boots. He said that "WWE Raw" moving to Netflix will be a historic moment for the company and he wants to be part of it. Furthermore, the promotion is on a hot streak and the crowds are energetic right now, and that's the type of audience he wants to perform for.

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Cena concluded by saying that he won't be getting physical during his post-wrestling years. He insisted that he won't even return to be a guest referee, but he will remain and fan and advocate for WWE. That doesn't mean that he'll be gone for good, however, as he hopes to remain part of the extended WWE family for years to come.

John Cena's retirement is happening sooner than expected

While John Cena has been open about wanting to call it quits in the near-future for quite some time, the news of his retirement tour caught many fans by surprise. Cena previously stated that he wants to retire before he's 50, which is still three years away, suggesting that he had plenty more gas in the tank. At the same time, he's been consistent about not wanting to wear out his welcome as he respects the business too much, so maybe this news shouldn't come as a shock after all. 

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"The business has been good to me, I just want to do right and be good to the business," he told the "Armchair Expert with Dax Shepard" podcast. "I don't want to hang around for longer than I should because my ego says I need to be involved."

These days, Cena is primarily focused on his adventures in Hollywood as he's become a successful movie star. That said, his return to WWE in 2025 will entail him giving his full commitment to the company that turned him into a household name.

John Cena still has goals he wants to achieve in WWE

John Cena isn't returning to WWE for a nostalgia run before he hangs up his jeans shorts. The veteran wants to compete in meaningful programs and add more gold to his collection, which could mean chasing a 17th World Championship and making history if he wins it. Still, he knows that he can't just waltz back into the promotion and have the rocket strapped to his back — especially coming off the back of a losing streak.

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"I would love that opportunity, but those opportunities are earned, and given my past track record, I got some work to do," he said during the Money in the Bank press conference. "So what I said tonight about fantastic opportunities, man, the Rumble, that's a great ticket, right? Elimination Chamber now has some stakes to it, so that's another great opportunity, and like I said, WrestleMania is not my last [match]. Money in the Bank is another great opportunity, so I know from a straight competitive standpoint, I gotta work my way up from the bottom because I'm a realist."

At the time of this writing, Cena and Ric Flair hold the record for the most World Championships in history with 16 apiece. Flair previously stated that he won't be upset if Cena breaks his record, so it might not be beyond the realm of possibility. Of course, it remains to be seen what's in store for the "Leader of the Cenation" as he embarks on his final run.

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