Ranking Donald Trump's Best and Worst Moments in WWE
When WWE inducts Donald Trump into the Hall of Fame this April, the company will have a number of moments to pack into his highlight package.
Trump's WWE moments range from forgettable to downright cool.
As far as back as WrestleMania IV, the real estate tycoon, Apprentice host and author has been as involved with WWE as any celebrity. His induction into the celebrity wing of the Hall of Fame is long overdue.
WWE found the ideal celebrity in Trump, a man who clearly enjoys being a part of the product and a man that comes off as a real-life wrestling heel.
Ranked by their importance to WWE history and their entertainment value, here are Trump's moments with Vince McMahon's company.
9. WrestleMania XX Interview
At WrestleMania XX, Jesse Ventura stepped out to the crowd to interview Donald Trump.
Since it was the 20th edition of the premier event, WWE understandably wanted to connect WrestleMania past with WrestleMania present even more than normal. Having Ventura appear brought back a dash of nostalgia, Trump's appearance less so.
Ventura and Trump said little of interest in this interview.
Ventura asked if he would have Trump's support if he ran for office again. Trump said he would. That's about it. The exchange is neither entertaining nor memorable.
Trump seems disinterested here.
8. Sells Raw Back
The storyline of Donald Trump buying Raw from Vince McMahon in 2009 had potential, but it was rushed to the climax much too fast.
Trump's ownership of Raw lasted just a few blinks and McMahon bought it back in this anticlimactic segment.
There is a bit of haggling. McMahon grows increasingly desperate. Trump is dismissive.
The payoff is just way too easy with McMahon buying back Raw in a matter of minutes, without much of a fight.
7. Fires Santina Marella
While Donald Trump was the owner of Raw, he had one funny moment to his credit.
Trump kicks Vince McMahon out of his office, turning him into a scared dog. Santino's "sister," Santina Marella makes an appearance and gives Trump a chance to say the line he made famous on his TV show.
Santina has a chuckle-worthy joke in the mix. The segment was a bit of fun, but not fantastic.
6. Drops Money on Fans
For the fans who were in attendance when Donald Trump had money rain down from the ceiling, this surely ranks higher. For the rest of us, it provided an interesting visual and the satisfaction of seeing Vince McMahon squirm.
In 2007, on Fan Appreciation Night, Trump looked to show how much more he appreciated the WWE fans than McMahon did.
He showered the crowd with McMahon's money while McMahon suffered.
5. Boogeyman Backstage Segment
Before the hair vs. hair match at WrestleMania 23, Donald Trump waited backstage alongside Miss USA.
He didn't like the way he was treated. He'd been given nothing to drink, nothing to eat, an act he took as disrespect.
Boogeyman dropped in, worms hanging out of his mouth. Trump was unfazed. Perhaps he's seen scarier mugs in his experience as a businessman.
He berated Boogeyman, coercing him into getting him sandwiches.
This was an amusing segment designed to make Trump look hard-nosed. The segment does a good job, drawing out a laugh along the way.
4. WrestleMania 23 Contract Signing
Donald Trump vs. Vince McMahon, or more accurately Bobby Lashley vs. Umaga, was on the horizon.
The two billionaire businessmen faced off at the contract-signing table. McMahon promised this would be the last contract Trump would sign with hair.
As expected, the contract signing turned ugly in the end.
Trump pushed McMahon over the table, providing a memorable clip to play during promos for their match. It added a spark to their WrestleMania clash, benefiting from the surprise of Trump's physical involvement.
3. Buys Raw
Donald Trump swooped in on a struggling Vince McMahon and bought Raw away from him.
This was a potentially fantastic angle. A corporate takeover, celebrity involvement and the surprise factor; this storyline had plenty to work with.
Trump spoke via satellite about giving back to fans. He promised a commercial-free Raw the following week. "Don't get in my way," he told McMahon.
This set up a mogul vs. mogul rivalry but was abandoned too soon. McMahon bought Raw right back.
2. Battle of the Billionaires
WWE was smart to let Umaga and Bobby Lashley do the physical work in the Battle of the Billionaires. An actual Donald Trump match would have been a disaster.
Instead, WWE fans saw him and Vince McMahon battle via their chosen superstars, ending with the memorable moment of McMahon getting his head shaved.
Steve Austin's appearance as special guest referee boosted the entertainment value of this solid match. This was more about getting mainstream media attention for the rest of WrestleMania. It helped create a buzz for the event beyond the world of WWE.
1. Hosting WrestleMania IV and V
Donald Trump didn't have any famous lines or push anybody over in either WrestleMania IV or V, but his involvement helped bring legitimacy to a burgeoning commodity.
Trump agreed to host WWE's biggest event at his Trump Plaza.
He may have seen what Vince McMahon saw, a vision of an enormous money-making show that would one day bring in millions of dollars. Trump brought WrestleMania to Atlantic City and additional, curious eyes to the product.
This is his most impactful contribution to WWE, a move that began a long relationship with McMahon and with sports entertainment.