Why John Cena Is Receiving the Muhammad Ali Legacy Award


John Cena attends the 'Ferdinand' special screening at BFI Southbank on December 3, 2017 in London, England.

John Cena | Stuart C. Wilson/Getty Images

John Cena is a man of many talents. It was recently announced Sports Illustrated is awarding Cena with the Muhammad Ali Legacy Award. What is this award and why is the wrestler the latest recipient? Here’s why John Cena is receiving the Muhammad Ali Legacy Award.

What is the Sports Illustrated Muhammad Ali Legacy Award?

 Colin Kaepernick receives the SI Muhammad Ali Legacy Award during SPORTS ILLUSTRATED 2017 Sportsperson of the Year Show on December 5, 2017 at Barclays Center in New York City.

Colin Kaepernick | Slaven Vlasic/Getty Images for Sports Illustrated

The award is given each year to an athlete or sports figure who does an excellent job of representing leadership, sportsmanship, and philanthropy. Cena will receive the Muhammad Ali Legacy Award at the Sportsperson of the Year Awards show in Los Angeles this year. Last year’s recipient was football player Colin Kaepernick.

The award was originally named the Legacy Award but was changed to honor boxer Muhammad Ali. “The honor will celebrate individuals whose dedication to the ideals of sportsmanship has spanned decades and whose career in athletics has directly or indirectly impacted the world,” it says on the Sports Illustrated awards site.

Why John Cena Is Receiving the Muhammad Ali Legacy Award

John Cena attends the Make-A-Wish celebration event for John Cena's 500th Wish Granting Milestone at Dave & Buster's Time Square on August 21, 2015 in New York City.

John Cena | Photo by Rob Kim/Getty Images

Although Cena is focused on his career, he also makes time to give back. One way he does this is through his work with Make-A-Wish Foundation. Cena has granted nearly 600 wishes through the foundation. Despite his hectic schedule, he even makes time to grant wishes right before scheduled wrestling matches, reports The New York Times.

“To have a legacy award of any kind bestowed upon you is tremendous,” Cena said during an interview with The Associated Press. “To be in the company of people who have received this and to receive an honor named after Muhammad Ali is an honor that means so much to me.”

John Cena’s efforts to help find a cure for breast cancer

John Cena attends the premiere of Paramount Pictures' "Daddy's Home 2" at The Regency Village Theatre on November 5, 2017 in Westwood, California.

John Cena | Alberto E. Rodriguez/Getty Images

Cena has also been involved in advocacy efforts for breast cancer awareness through WWE’s partnership with the Susan G. Komen Foundation. WWE and Susan G. Komen collaborated to create the Rise Above Cancer campaign, which included all WWE Superstars and Divas wearing pink gear in the ring during National Breast Cancer Awareness Month.

Cancer awareness is close to Cena’s heart because his younger brother is a survivor of Stage 4 brain cancer, reports The Associated Press. “I found out my brother’s struggle with brain cancer was a positive one. The reason it was a positive one was because of early detection. And Susan G. Komen for a Cure is about early detection for breast cancer,” said Cena during outreach efforts for the organization.

John Cena’s net worth

John Cena has a net worth of $55 million. In 2018, he was named one of Forbes’ highest-paid wrestlers.

What’s next for John Cena

Cena has a quite a few projects in the works. Some of the films he is working on include Project X-traction, The Voyage of Doctor Dolittle, Playing with Fire, and The Janson Directive.

Read more: Hulk Hogan Net Worth and How Much He Made from Wrestling

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