Forbes’ Alfred Konuwa recently spoke with John Cena where he discussed a variety of topics including The Undertaker’s comments about how today’s wrestling is “a little soft.” Cena noted that the business has evolved over the years, and that he has been accused of ruining the business as well. He stated that he does not think “it’s soft I think it’s different.”
“I guess I’ve viewed the WWE as a product outside of myself for a long time,” Cena said. “I guess that’s why I was so interested in the business side of it from very early on in my career. In that, I’ve seen it evolve, but I’ve also been called everything that’s ruined sports entertainment.
“I could look at the economics of it and make an argument that between myself—and the large amount of folks that carried on the roster beyond the Attitude Era into the Ruthless Aggression Era and the Reality Era—the fans of the Attitude Era certainly looked at our product as not what they’re used to, but it wasn’t. So I may have a bit of disagreement with Undertaker’s word choice, because I don’t think it’s soft I think it’s different.”
Cena recalled Steve Austin coming back to the PG era and having to adapt to a different situation. Cena noted that Austin is such a great performer that he could eventually get used to the different style and thrive in a different era.
“I remember one of the first time Steve Austin came back during the height of the PG era, and he was just befuddled,” Cena recalled. “Because Steve Austin goes out there and runs it. And if he gets stuck he can curse, he can throw up some middle fingers, he can ask for a beer…but we took away three of the biggest clubs that he can hit with and told him to go out there and be himself. And he came back shaking his head and said ‘I don’t know how you do this!’ But if he had enough time, he’s a great performer, he could get used to it.”