John Cena says he’s retiring from in-ring competition next year

FILE - John Cena on Monday, May 15, 2023 -- (Photo by: Nathan Congleton/NBC via Getty Images)

John Cena announced an end to his WWE performance career Saturday night, saying his last in-ring competition will be next year. 

The 16-time world champion wrestler made an appearance that was reportedly a surprise at the Money in the Bank show in Toronto and shared his timeline over the next few months. 

He promised he’ll be a part of WWE’s weekly television show "Raw" when it moves to the streaming giant Netflix next year. 

"That is history, that is a first, and I will be there," he said. 

RELATED: Netflix scores WWE's 'Monday Night Raw' in $5 billion live-streaming deal

And in terms of "lasts," Cena said he would compete at next year's Royal Rumble, Elimination Chamber and WrestleMania, which will be his final events. Chants of "Thank you Cena" roared through the crowd afterward.

Earlier this year, Cena hinted with "Entertainment Tonight" and People Magazine that he’d stop performing for WWE within the next few years.  

He clarified in a later interview that he planned on saying involved "integrally" with the WWE, and that he would never be away from the WWE family.

"But as far as in-ring and falling down and taking an ass-whooping, the clock is limited on that one," he told

John Cena age

John Cena is 47 years old, born April 23, 1977. 

John Cena WWE

Cena made his WWE debut in 2002 and quickly became a fan favorite. His first dominant shtick was as a trash-talking rapper when he was nicknamed the "Doctor of Thuganomics."

Two of his most famous matches were at back-to-back WrestleMania events in 2011 and 2012, both of which came against Dwayne "The Rock" Johnson. Cena lost the first but won the second.

Cena has been a part-timer the last five years. His most recent return, before Saturday, came on night two of WrestleMania XL when Cody Rhodes dethroned Roman Reigns as the undisputed WWE champion.

He won his first of 16 world championships at WrestleMania XXI in 2005 at the age of 28.

Because of his in-ring success and popularity that was unmatched throughout the 2010s, he's widely regarded as one of the greatest WWE performers of all time and is often placed on hypothetical WWE "Mount Rushmore" lists.

Cena has headlined WrestleMania five times, and since next year's in Las Vegas will be his farewell, it's fair to assume he will headline a sixth.

John Cena movies

Cena has made a name for himself outside of wrestling in the last few years. 

Now a Hollywood superstar, he’s starred in several blockbuster films, including a small role in 2023’s mega hit ‘Barbie," before appearing nude at the Oscars to present the Academy Award for Best Costume Design. 

RELATED: John Cena appears nude while presenting Oscar for costume design

His most recent films this year include "Argylle" and "Ricky Stanicky." 

John Cena "The Bear"

John Cena also lent his acting chops to one of the most anticipated TV shows of the summer – "The Bear."

He was one of many guest stars in the hit show’s third season, as Sammy Fak, a cousin of Jeremy Allen White’s character Carmy in Episode Five, "Children."

This story was reported from Detroit. FOX News contributed.