In a recent appearance on ESPN’s First Take, WWE superstars Seth Rollins and Becky Lynch revealed their top five sports figures who they believe would excel as heels in the world of professional wrestling. While both Rollins and Lynch are currently beloved babyfaces in the WWE, they know a thing or two about playing the villainous role themselves. Here are the sports figures they handpicked as potential heels:
- Bill Belichick (New England Patriots Coach): Rollins kicked off the list by selecting the legendary New England Patriots coach, Bill Belichick. Drawing a parallel between Belichick and classic wrestling managers like Nobby “The Brain” and “Classy” Freddie Blassie, Rollins highlighted Belichick’s pedigree, dynasty-building skills, and his penchant for taking shortcuts to achieve victory. He also jokingly referenced the infamous DeflateGate scandal, implying that Belichick knows how to win at all costs.
- Katie Taylor (Boxer): Lynch chose the dominant boxer Katie Taylor as her first pick. Recognizing Taylor’s unparalleled success in the sport, Lynch hinted that there might be more to the seemingly kind and unassuming Irish boxer than meets the eye. Lynch playfully speculated that Taylor’s niceness might be a facade, suggesting that she could be a master manipulator who lures her opponents into a false sense of security before delivering a knockout blow.
- LeBron James (Basketball Player): Rollins went on to select LeBron James, widely regarded as one of the greatest basketball players of all time. Rollins explained that James’ unparalleled talent, impressive list of accolades, and constant comparisons to other basketball legends make him an easy target for dislike. He emphasized James’ ability to shrug off criticism and live life on his own terms, asserting that these qualities contribute to his natural heel persona.
- Sean O’Malley (UFC Fighter): Lynch’s next choice was Sean O’Malley, a colorful and confident UFC fighter known for his vibrant appearance, including his distinctive hair and face tattoos. Lynch playfully mocked O’Malley’s flamboyant style and stated that his punchable face epitomizes the characteristics of a classic heel. Her tongue-in-cheek assessment showcased the importance of physical appearance and attitude in cultivating a wrestling villain persona.
- Aaron Rodgers (Former Green Bay Packers Quarterback): Rollins concluded the list with a personal choice that struck a nerve: Aaron Rodgers, former quarterback for the Green Bay Packers. As a passionate fan of the Chicago Bears, a rival team of the Packers, Rollins expressed his disdain for Rodgers, citing the quarterback’s confidence, cockiness, and what he deemed a highly punchable face. Despite Rodgers’ recent trade to the New York Jets, the animosity between Rollins and the legendary quarterback remains strong.
While the idea of these sports figures transitioning into the world of professional wrestling may be purely hypothetical, Rollins and Lynch’s choices highlight the qualities that can make a sports figure an effective heel in the WWE. Whether it’s a coach’s tactical cunning, a boxer’s hidden agenda, a basketball player’s polarizing success, a UFC fighter’s colorful personality, or a quarterback’s fierce rivalry, these individuals possess the characteristics that would make them compelling villains within the realm of professional wrestling.
As Rollins and Lynch’s playful analysis demonstrates, the line between sports and entertainment can blur, allowing fans to speculate on which sports figures would thrive as WWE heels. While these athletes continue to make waves in their respective sports, wrestling fans can have fun imagining the exciting personas they could embody if they ever decided to step foot inside the squared circle.