After a career in the Canadian Football League (CFL), Paul Cheng went on to fight mixed martial arts and has since retired to focus on his acting career. Well that could all change a little bit if things go his way, as he will travel to Orlando this week to try out for WWE’s NXT.
Paul Cheng and teammate chosen to tryout for WWE’s NXT
“It’s probably the most exciting opportunity I’ve had in years,” Cheng told MMASucka.com. “I’ve always wanted to be a football player and my dream was to be a WWE wrestler when i was growing up. I thought I was too old, but never too late. Thanks to WWE for the opportunity.”
Cheng and his Clinch MMA teammate Shawna Ram have both made the official list of 30 men and 15 females. The tryouts will take place in Orlando, Florida for three days, May 18-20. “Typhoon” will learn all the basic wrestling skills and be tested on his physical abilities. Cheng definitely has the personality to be a show in the ring and his acting abilities will help him out as well.
“We were scouted by Robert Gordon Sr. who is the Manager of Talent Development for the WWE. He played in the NFL and CFL for 18 years.”
Cheng (5-2) was always proud to speak about his Asian heritage when doing interviews prior to his MMA bouts. He started out his pro career in British Columbia and was then able to showcase his skills in Asia in front of millions with ONE Championship. The 37-year-old retired following a loss to Brandon Vera in December of 2015.
“I hope to be the first Asian (Chinese) WWE super star,” Cheng said. “When I was a kid, wrestling helped me get away from bullies and inspired me to become the athlete I am today. I hope to be a role model for other Asian kids by providing them someone they can look up to.
“My wrestling idols growing up were Hulk hogan, The Ultimate Warrior and obviously The Rock, Stone Cold Steve Austin and Triple H.”