10 Times Pro Wrestlers And MMA Fighters Had A Public Feud

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The worlds of professional wrestling and mixed martial arts exist in juxtaposition to each other. Indeed, both are superficially combat sports, with the big difference that MMA fighting is legitimate competitive sport, whereas professional wrestling is all about entertainment with predetermined outcomes and fabricated scenarios.



Related: 10 MMA Stars Who Should Switch To Pro Wrestling

Athletes have gone through both efforts, and indeed, there are fans who follow both forms, especially as the lines have blurred with fighters like Conor McGregor, but explicitly drawing on wrestling lore. with their trash language and their theater. Hostilities broke out between wrestlers…WWE Superstars, in particular, and fighters on more than one occasion.

ten Chael Sonnen vs. John Cena

Chael Sonnen earned the nickname “The Bad Guy” in part because of his trashy conversation game. That includes crossing lines from MMA to pro wrestling where he took aim at John Cena on social media. Cena is known for posting abstract philosophical thoughts as a form of motivation for his followers. Sonnen, in turn, began to undermine Cena by pointing out where the thoughts didn’t quite add up or downplaying them. It comes years after Sonnen first approached the sixteen-time world champion, insulting him and publicly demanding a match as early as 2011.


9 Becky Lynch vs. Cris Cyborg

Before Becky Lynch exploded for the biggest run of her career which culminated with her WrestleMania main event and went on to reign as Raw Women’s Champion for over a year, she launched into a Twitter jam. with UFC’s Cris Cyborg. The exchange included Lynch telling Cyborg she would watch his fight, and Cyborg suggesting the two have a match at SummerSlam 2017.

Related: The 10 Worst Things Becky Lynch Has Done In Wrestling

Nothing came of it, but the exchange ran a line between fans of both women wondering if there was any real heat between them, and others speculating that they were actually working from a wrestling angle.

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8 Conor McGregor vs. Sheamus

There is perhaps no wrestler who has drawn more clearly from the pro wrestling playbook of theaters and cut promos than Conor McGregor, whose sports-entertainment antics paired with his fighting game have made him a UFC megastar. He engaged on social media with fellow Irishman Sheamus, with McGregor seemingly baiting the Celtic Warrior until he finally fought back. Sheamus finally walked the line between pro wrestling bravado and talking pragmatically about size differences by saying he would “step on” McGregor if they fought.


seven Roman Reigns vs. Daniel Cormier

In the build up to WrestleMania 37, Roman Reigns did media work in which he sold absolute confidence, including not only that he would crush his challengers, Daniel Bryan and Edge, but also that he could crush the champion. UFC Daniel Cormier. Cormier took to Twitter to hit back, saying it was a fight he would fight, and tagging Triple H and Vince McMahon to get their attention. Like a number of other wrestler-fighter matchups, some fans thought they felt a work as if these two were setting an angle.

6 Drew McIntyre vs. Colby Covington

In 2020, things got a little heated between MMA fighter Colby Covington and Drew McIntyre during his underrated run as WWE Champion. Covington offered a big talk about how he could transition into sports entertainment and “make wrestling real again” during a visit to What the Heck. McIntyre did not like Covington making light of his work and responded via ESPN that he would shut down the much smaller Covington if he ever fought him. Covington took things to the next level by suggesting that once public health permits, he would hunt down the Scottish man and ‘get his soul out of his body’. Covington has failed to deal with the threat so far, but the trade engaged wrestling and fighting fans for a minute.


5 CM Punk vs. Cathal Pendred

CM Punk has traveled both sides of the pro wrestling and MMA line, though he’s certainly had much more success in the former than the latter. Before entering the Octagon, he engaged in a Twitter war with Cathal Pendred. The fighter tried to now call the AEW Champion, while Punk hit Pendred for being boring and for calling out Punk as an easy target and because he had a much larger following.

4 Brock Lesnar vs. The contractor

Brock Lesnar and The Undertaker were, of course, notable rivals within the confines of WWE, feuding during Lesnar’s original WWE tenure and then providing The Beast’s spectacle ending The Streak at WrestleMania 30, before a heated follow-up feud in 2015. all that action, it’s easy to forget their other feud that momentarily captured fans’ imaginations, when they had a showdown at UFC 121 in 2010. At that time , Lesnar was completely retired from professional wrestling, but The Undertaker attended one of his fights. and the two had a brief tense moment as The Beast walked past The Dead Man after the fight. The Phenom described in an interview with ESPN’s Ariel Helwani years later that he was trying to stir up intrigue and a potential WWE match, even though it didn’t amount to much at the time.


3 Bryan Danielson vs. mike jackson

During a Q&A with fans, Bryan Danielson said he could beat UFC fighter Mike Jackson “on the court, for sure.” It was 2018, right after Jackson’s fight with CM Punk, and one Jackson quoted him warning Bryan not to let his “mouth write a check” that he couldn’t cash. The two argued a bit more on social media, but nothing more came of it.

2 Conor McGregor vs. Chris Jericho

Conor McGregor has had several run-ins with wrestling personalities. Chris Jericho, who sadly didn’t back down after a fight with Brock Lesnar, wasn’t about to avoid a clash with McGregor on social media. This included Jericho suggesting that McGregor’s fights were fixed.

Related: Conor McGregor Vs Dustin Poirier 2 (& 9 Other Times The Losers Talked About Losing)

On another occasion, the two argued over the semantics of being a “Champ-Champ” or a two-time champion, with the notorious seemingly doubting Jericho’s title claim, and Jericho dismissing McGregor altogether.

1 Seth Rollins vs. Colby Covington

Colby Covington’s fuss at the first point extended to Seth Rollins, who he called in an interview with Submission Radio Australia a “little crying baby”. Covington clarified that he respects and is friends with a number of WWE talents like Ronda Rousey and Bobby Lashley who were legitimate fighters. It all smacks of work — although only Covington may have participated — when he proposed a mixed match pitting him and Rousey against Rollins and Becky Lynch.


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