16 things you didn’t know about WWE

  • Before it was called the WWE, the organisation went by WWF.
  • President Donald Trump is a member of the WWE Hall of Fame.
  • WWE has its own TV subscription network.

Since its conception in the 1950s, the WWE has become a global sports entertainment powerhouse. The network is broadcasted in over 150 countries, reaching an audience of millions of viewers around the world.

You’re probably familiar with the basic principles of wrestling and can name a couple of well-known faces like Hulk Hogan and John Cena, but there’s more to the company than what you see on the surface.

Here are 16 things you didn’t know about the WWE.

WWE’s origins — and its ties to the McMahon family — date back to the 1920s.

EVP and COO, U.S. Products, NYSE Group, Lawrence Leibowitz, WWE Marketing EVP Michelle Wilson, WWE CEO Linda McMahon, WWE EVP of Creative Development and Operations, Stephanie McMahon Levesque and WWE COO Donna Goldsmith ring the opening bell at the New York Stock Exchange on March 27, 2009 in New York City. Michael Loccisano/Getty Images

Before there was the official WWE, Jess McMahon started out by promoting wrestling events in the 1920s in New York City. He died in 1954 and his son, Vincent, later took the reigns of Capitol Wrestling Corporation, the wrestling promotion business started by his father.

Vincent officially bought the regionally-based company in the 1980s and expanded it into the WWE we know today. He is currently the chairman and CEO and the entire McMahon family remains very publicly involved in the organisation.

The first WrestleMania was in 1985 and featured Mr. T and Cyndi Lauper.

WrestleMania I in 1985 featured the WWF Women’s Championship match between Wendi Richter, managed by singer Cyndi Lauper, and Leilani Kai, managed by former champion ‘The Fabulous Moolah.’ New York Post Archives / Contributor/Getty Images

The very first WrestleMania event took place on March 31, 1985, at Madison Square Garden in New York City. During the inaugural match, Hulk Hogan and Mr. T defeated Paul Orndorff and Roddy Piper in the main event. And, Cyndi Lauper was a ringside manager for a female wrestler named Wendi Richter.

WrestleMania 2 is the only WrestleMania event to take place on a Monday.

WrestleMania is always held on a Sunday, except for WrestleMania 2. The event took place on Monday, April 7, 1986, making it the only one to not take place on a Sunday.

WWE was originally known as WWF but had to change its name

World Wrestling Entertainment hasn’t always been known as WWE. From 1979 to 2002, the wrestling franchise was known as World Wrestling Federation or WWF for short. The organisation changed its name following a lawsuit by the World Wildlife Fund, which also goes by WWF.

The two actually first settled in 1994, according to the Guardian, on the terms that the WWE would cut back on the use of the acronym, but in 2002, a UK court found that the original agreement had been breached and thus, the WWE was born out of necessity.

While people are inducted into the WWE Hall of Fame around every WrestleMania, there is no brick and mortar hall of fame.

John Cena is seen at the WWE Hall of Fame Ceremony. Don Feria/AP Images for WWE

Unlike the Rock ‘n’ Roll Hall of Fame in Cleveland, Ohio, or the Pro Football Hall of Fame in Canton, Ohio, there is no actual WWE Hall of Fame you can visit. But the organisation hosts an annual WWE Hall of Fame induction ceremony and this year’s event takes place on Saturday, April 6 at the Barclays Center in Brooklyn, New York.

President Donald Trump is a member of the WWE Hall of Fame.

Trump was inducted in 2013. YouTube/WWE

Trump has been in attendance at many WWE events throughout the years and Trump Plaza in Atlantic City hosted WrestleMania 4 (1988) and 5 (1999). The president even took to the ring a few times, notably competing against Vince McMahon during Wrestlemania and dropping real money from the rafters.

In 2013, Trump was inducted into WWE’s Hall of Fame by McMahon. Linda McMahon, who is married to Vince, even serves in Trump’s cabinet as the head of Small Business Administration and is going to be part of his 2020 PAC, according to Politico.

The WWE Performance Center is located in Orlando, Florida.

Orlando has been dubbed the “Theme Park Capital of the World,” but roller coasters and rides aren’t the only form of entertainment the city has to offer. It’s also where top up-and-coming wrestlers train to become part of the main WWE roster.

John Cena has won the WWE World Championship an impressive 16 times.

You may know John Cena from the big screen, but his career as a professional wrestler is remarkable. As of 2017, Cena has 16 WWE World Championship victories. Ric Flair is the only other professional wrestler to accomplish this.

WWE has its own TV network.

The WWE Network, which launched in February 2014, offers a subscription streaming service that includes live WWE pay-per-view events and unlimited access to WWE premium content. It’s also the only place to watch WrestleMania for free.

According to Bloomberg, it’s the 11th most popular streaming video service.

More people attended WrestleMania 32 than any other previous show.

In 2016, WrestleMania 32 set a new WWE attendance record with 101,763 fans at Arlington’s AT&T Stadium. The previous record was 93,173 at WrestleMania 3 in Detroit in 1987.

WWE doesn’t allow blood in the ring (anymore).

Seth Rollins and John Cena battle it out at the WWE SummerSlam 2015 at Barclays Center of Brooklyn on August 23, 2015, in New York City. JP Yim/Getty Images

Since 2008, WWE has banned performers from bleeding in the ring – a result of WWE programming shifting from TV-14 to TV-PG.

The mayor of Knox County, Tennessee, is a former WWE champion.

Glenn Jacobs, the Republican mayor of Knox County, hasn’t always been a professional politician. Prior to his 2018 election, Jacobs was a professional wrestler in the WWE in the 1990s.

There is no off-season.

Unlike major sports such as basketball, baseball, football, and hockey, WWE doesn’t take a break. The sports entertainment organisation operates 52 weeks a year.

WWE keeps it all in the family when it comes to management.

Stephanie McMahon and Triple H. Taylor Hill / Contributor/Getty Images

WWE Executive Vice President Triple H is a former champion and has been married to Chief Brand Officer Stephanie McMahon since 2003.

The Undertaker won more than 20 consecutive WrestleMania matches.

Between 1991 and 2013,The Undertaker won a total of 21 back-to-back WrestleMania matches before finally losing to Brock Lesnar in a match at WrestleMania 33.

Women will be the main event match at WrestleMania for the first time ever in 2019.

Ronda Rousey. Bryan Steffy/Getty

In April, WWE the women’s match will be the main event of WrestleMania 35 as the Raw Women’s Championship for the first time in WWE history. The match-up, slated for Sunday, April 7 at MetLife Stadium, features Ronda Rousey, Charlotte Flair, and Becky Lynch.

This follows the company’s first all-female pay-per-view match in October.