- John Cena married Shay Shariatzadeh on Oct. 12, 2020, in a private ceremony.
- The couple held a formal wedding in July 2022.
- Shay and John began dating in 2019, two years after John and Nikki Garcia called off their wedding.
WWE superstar and actor John Cena and his wife, Shay Shariatzadeh, have been married for nearly three years. They originally tied the knot in a private ceremony in Tampa, Fla. in Oct. 2020, and then wed in front of family and friends at the ritzy Rosewood Hotel Georgia in downtown Vancouver on July 16, 2022. They were later spotted holding hands as they headed into the members-only Vancouver Club, presumably for their wedding reception, as seen below.
Shay, 34, looked gorgeous in a long sleeveless wedding dress with an open back and floral appliqué details, paired with sparkly Jimmy Choo shoes. Meanwhile, John, 45, donned a handsome navy blue and white pinstriped suit he matched with light brown dress shoes.
John and Shay’s wedding marked John’s second time getting married. As fans will recall, he was also engaged to fellow wrestler Nikki Bella (who now uses her surname, Garcia), for a year between 2017 and 2018 after dating for several years. Read on to learn about John Cena’s wife, Shay Shariatzadeah, their relationship, and his past romances.
Who Is Shay Shariatzadeah?
Now a household name, John Cena is widely regarded as one of the greatest professional wrestlers of all time. In WWE, he has earned a whopping 16 world championships. On top of his lengthy wrestling resume, Cena has now created a formidable career in acting, bodybuilding, television presenting, and even rapping. He’s transformed into a bonafide film star, appearing in blockbuster movies like Suicide Squad and Bumblebee. His Suicide Squad character Peacemaker was such a hit it was given its own HBO Max series called Peacemaker.
A far cry from her husband’s lengthy career in the limelight, Shay studied electrical and electronics engineering at the University of British Columbia, where she received a bachelor’s degree in 2013. “I have always enjoyed math and physics,” she said in a Q&A with her previous employer, Avigilon. “My brother studied engineering in school, and I remember one day he came home with a project, and it was an autonomous car — and that was it! I decided to study Engineering.”
Shay was a product manager at Avigilon, a Motorola Solutions Company in Vancouver, Canada. “I interviewed multiple Product Managers to figure out how they got into their role, and I followed their path,” she said in a profile on Avigilon’s website. “Today, I take pride working in the video surveillance industry because our products help keep people and their assets safe, and that’s my little contribution to our world.”
Notably, Shay has stayed connected to her alma mater, where she continues to work as a mentor. Part of her duties includes developing and maintaining “connections to UBC and contributing to efforts to build a stronger industry and community” and contributing “to the future of engineering and technology by assisting the next generation of leaders,” according to her LinkedIn.
Shay was born in Iran, and she cites her mother — who works as a surgeon — as her inspiration. “While she was at the peak of her career, she gave it all up to move her family to Canada to give us a better future. She is the reason I fight to be the best version of myself, to be kind and to never give up,” she said in Avigilon’s International Women’s Day feature.
As of this writing, it appears that Shay has taken a step back from the workforce. She last worked as a product manager at Sonatype between 2019 and 2021, and then as a
Program Manager at Microsoft for four months in 2021. Shay does not have any public social media accounts, and she has not appeared on John’s.
How Did John & Shay Meet?
John Cena and Shay Shariatzadeh were together for a year and a half before tying the knot. He first saw Shay while filming at a Vancouver restaurant where she was dining with a group of female friends and had a love-at-first-sight moment. “There was one woman I was looking at and I couldn’t take my eyes off her… that’s when it started,” John said in an interview with Entertainment Tonight in Oct. 2019. The couple began dating in early 2019, and were first spotted having a romantic dinner date in her native Vancouver in March 2019, while John was in Canada to film Playing with Fire.
His next project took him to San Diego, where Shay flew in to meet him as they embarked on a long-distance relationship. John showed that chivalry is not dead, as he was photographed personally taking her back to the airport after the long weekends together and passionately kissing her goodbye. Shay eventually landed her job at Sonatype working remotely, which allowed her more flexibility in keeping up with John’s jet-setting lifestyle.
They finally made their red carpet debut on Oct. 26, 2019, at the NYC premiere of his film Playing With Fire, where they were both glowing with love as they smiled at the cameras. John and Shay have kept their relationship relatively low profile, but the beauty has continued supporting her man at red-carpet events. Just weeks after their official public debut, the two were out for another premiere: This time, for John’s flick Dolittle. As seen below, Shay was a red carpet pro by then and looked breathtaking in a pleated silver dress and a voluminous side braid. She proudly posed alongside John, who was beaming the entire time.
While the COVID-19 pandemic put a stop to in-person premieres for some time, John and Shay were back at it by Aug. 2021 for The Suicide Squad premiere. The couple happily smiled and posed for cameras, even sharing a kiss for the crowd! By then, they were officially husband and wife.
Engagement And Marriage
Although they seem to have no problem showing their love off at movie premieres, Shay and John have kept their lips sealed about their relationship. They didn’t even confirm their engagement directly. After Shay stepped out wearing a ring on that finger, John seemingly confirmed the news with a tweet about marriage. “‘A happy marriage is a long conversation that always seems too short’ — Andre’ Maurois,” he tweeted on Feb. 18, 2020, as seen below.
“A happy marriage is a long conversation that always seems too short” – Andre’ Maurois
— John Cena (@JohnCena) February 18, 2020
And as mentioned above, they tied the knot in a courthouse ceremony later that year, and then threw a big party for friends and family 21 months after. Between the two weddings, a person close to the couple said sparks flew between the pair from the start. “It was love at first sight,” the insider told PEOPLE in Oct. 2020. [The couple] knew they would marry, so the [private ceremony] wasn’t a surprise. He just wanted to do it out of the limelight.”Brie Bella Celebrity Profile – Hollywood Life
Will John And Shay Have Kids?
Thoughts of expanding their family seem to be on the horizon for the couple. The Fast & Furious 9 star candidly opened up about possibly having kids in a 2021 interview. “I’m a little bit older, a bit wiser. I’m realizing there is life and life exists and it’s beautiful — and I think part of that is being a parent, so we’ll see,” he confessed to the British outlet The Sun. This comes as quite a surprise due to his strong stance against having children with his ex-fiancée Nikki Garcia, which ultimately contributed to the demise of their relationship. Shay hasn’t publicly commented about whether or not she wants kids.
John Cena’s Past Relationships
As mentioned above, John was previously engaged to former wrestler and television personality, Nikki Garcia. Unlike John’s current relationship, John and Nikki were much more open about their romance while they were together, and John even appeared on Nikki and her twin sister, Brie Garcia‘s, reality show, Total Bellas. Although their relationship was full of numerous sweet moments, the pair often disagreed about their future together.
In a Sept. 14 episode of Total Bellas, they got into a tiff because Bella wanted to marry John and start a family with him, while he did not see that in his future. “I’m trying to be a realist. “I’ve told you that I don’t want to get married and I don’t want to have kids, and you do want to get married and you do want to have kids,” he said in a clip of the show. “So I feel like this is a time-bomb over my head.”
Two years later, John reasserted his stance in an interview with Rolling Stone. “I know I cannot handle raising a chil. And just because everyone else is happy with children doesn’t mean that’s how I have to live,” he explained. “I’ve been upfront about this. I just have things I need to get done. It’s not negotiable. We’ve been to therapy over it. I don’t think it will ever be over with. I’m stubborn as f*ck and extremely selfish as well. I don’t want kids, I don’t want marriage.”
However, something changed inside his heart, and the following year, John got down on one knee for Nikki at Wrestlemania, which can be viewed below. Unfortunately, the longtime lovers broke up in 2018.
“I have many regrets about that relationship,” Nikki admitted in her 2020 memoir Incomparable. “I wish I’d understood how the patterns in my life, and my relationship with my own father, informed how I react to love, boundaries, and feelings of abandonment. I think I could have averted some of what happened [with John.]”
That same year, she confirmed that she and John simply wanted different things out of life, and that’s why they had to separate. “Overall, we did have such an incredible relationship, it was just two people that wanted two different lives,” she said on the Better Together podcast. “We were trying so hard to make it one.”
“Even in the end when he was willing to give me kids, I could just tell, it’s not what we wanted,” she added. “And that’s really, like, you know, what pushed me in the end, was like, if I’m going to force someone to be a father.” She also said she didn’t want him to one day realized he regretted having a child with her.
Before Nikki, John had a few other relationships with those in the wrestling community, including Mickie James — who he dated in 2007 — and Lisa Marie Varon, who he briefly dated in 2002. At the time, Lisa was on a break from her husband Lee Varon, to whom she was married from 1994 until 2015. “One of those times that we separated, I dated John for about a month. It was not in 2006 or 2007. It was 2002. I was married but separated. John was single,” she explained to F4WOnline.com (via Wrestling News Plus).
John was also previously married to Elizabeth Huberdeau. The former couple got engaged in 2009 and walked down the aisle that summer. John and Elizabeth were notoriously private about their relationship and were rarely seen together over their three-year marriage. The exes divorced in 2012.