Nikki Bella is an American retired professional wrestler, model, and actress. She is best known for her appearances on WWE’s Smackdown brand. One half of the famous duo ‘The Bella Twins,’ Nikki made her wrestling debut after being signed on by WWE in June 2007. She was eventually assigned to fight in ‘Florida Championship Wrestling.’ She teamed up with her twin sister Brie Bella and the duo went on to establish themselves as a popular tag team. The sisters exhibited some great tricks, which made them an instant favorite among the audience. Nikki debuted on Smackdown in 2008 and eventually won the ‘WWE Divas Championship’ twice; her second reign as the champion lasted 301 days. Apart from wrestling, Nikki was constantly seen making appearances on television and brand endorsements. ‘Rolling Stone’ magazine honored her with the ‘Diva of the Year’ tag in December 2015. The same year, she was ranked first on ‘Pro Wrestling Illustrated’ (PWI) magazine's ‘Female 50’ list. In 2016, she won the ‘Choice Female Athlete’ award at the ‘Teen Choice Awards.’ She continues to serve as an inspiration to women across the USA, thanks to her dedication to fitness.
Childhood & Early Life
Nikki Bella was born Stephanie Nicole Garcia-Colace on November 21, 1983, in San Diego, California, USA, to Jon Garcia and Kathy Colace. She was born 16 seconds before her twin sister Brie. For most part of her childhood, she was raised in a farm, located in Arizona.
Nikki was a keen football player while growing up. She played along with her sister in an elementary school in Scottsdale, where she resided. Eventually, they became fitness fanatics and adopted a healthy lifestyle, which led them to pursue career in sports.
Her parents were of Mexican and Italian descent. Nikki would later mention that her parents supported their daughters wholeheartedly and that she had a comfortable childhood.
Nikki Bella finished her high school education from ‘Chaparral High School.’ For higher studies, she moved to San Diego and took admission in ‘Grossmont College.’ She played football for her school team and showed an immense talent and skill, quickly becoming the team favorite.
Although it seemed like she would go on to have a brilliant career in American football, she decided against pursuing football. She then moved to Los Angeles, where she started taking up odd jobs while trying to land modeling or acting assignments.
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Nikki Bella started hunting for modeling and acting jobs. Eventually, she appeared in a Fox TV show titled ‘Meet my Folks.’ Thanks to her impressive physique, she was noticed by agents and started receiving offers to appear in commercials. Eventually, she was seen in a 'Budweiser' commercial along with her sister.
Nikki and her sister competed unsuccessfully in competitions, such as ‘International Body Doubles Twins Search’ and the 2006 ‘WWE Diva search.’ 2007 proved to be fruitful for the sisters as they finally entered ‘World Wrestling Entertainment’ (WWE), the biggest wrestling showdown in the USA.
WWE signed Nikki and her twin sister for a development contract in June 2007, and they made their in-ring debut in ‘Florida Championship Wrestling’ on September 15, 2007. The sisters started off with a win and eventually became fan favorites due to their playful acts; they would often hide behind the referee and switch places, taking full advantage of their identical looks.
Their rivalry with Nattie Neidhart and Victoria Crawford kept them busy for the rest of the year. In the meantime, Nikki fought in some mixed tag team matches, teaming up with Kofi Kingston and Robert Anthony.
For the next two years, the sisters kept fighting in tag team matches. They also became popular for their backstage antics. By January 2011, the sisters had turned heel after assaulting Gail Kim backstage. Subsequently, the WWE universe (fans and audience) started booing them whenever they made an appearance.
On April 23, 2012, Nikki secured her first ‘WWE Divas Championship’ title after defeating Beth Phoenix on Raw. However, her reign as the champion was short-lived as she lost the title one week later to Layla.
The very next night on Raw, she got an opportunity to win back her championship in a triple threat match against Layla and Brie. However, she lost the match. Later that night, the news about her suspension from WWE was revealed on the official WWE website.
‘The Bella Twins’ became active again on Raw and started feuding with several wrestlers without any significant victory. The sisters were mostly busy with their crazy antics to entertain the audience.
In 2014, Nikki got an opportunity to win the ‘WWE Diva championship’ once again and defeated AJ Lee in a ‘Survivor Series’ match to earn it. She went on to keep the title for almost 10 months, setting up the record for the longest-reigning WWE Diva champion. She defended the title against multiple opponents, and eventually lost it to Charlotte in a ‘Night of Champions’ match.
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Nikki kept on fighting against several opponents along with her sister. Apart from tag team matches, she also participated in singles matches. She started a relationship with fellow wrestler John Cena. After a mixed tag team match at ‘WrestleMania 33,’ Cena proposed marriage to her and she accepted. However, in 2018, they broke off their engagement and canceled their wedding, which was to take place on May 5, 2018.
On January 22, 2018, the ‘Bella Twins’ made an appearance at the 25th Anniversary of Raw. The following year, it was announced that a cyst had been found on her brain, therefore ending her in-ring career. The same year, Nikki and Brie launched ‘Nicole + Brizee,’ a beauty line.
Nikki Bella dated WWE superstar Nick Nemeth for a brief period of time. Together, they participated in several matches and their romance became the talk of the town.
In 2014, she stated that she had married her high school boyfriend when she was 20, but had the marriage annulled three years later. Nikki also said in an interview that if she wasn’t a wrestler, she would have been a real estate agent as she is qualified to be one.
In 2012, John Cena and Nikki Bella began dating and became the most loved couple on and off the show. The couple announced their engagement on April 2, 2017. Two days later, Nikki announced her temporary break from professional wrestling. Her wedding with Cena was to take place on May 5, 2018, but they canceled their wedding.
On January 3, 2020, she got engaged to Russian dancer Artem Chigvintsev. On January 29, she announced that she is expecting her first child. On June 11, she announced that she is expecting a boy.
Apart from wrestling, Nikki has appeared in movies and TV shows, such as ‘Confessions of a Womanizer,’ ‘Ridiculousness,’ ‘Psyched,’ and ‘Total Divas.’
She was blamed for being the reason behind John Cena’s divorce with his ex-wife.
She was trained by Tom Prichard and developed a different wrestling style, which is now being attempted by several other female wrestlers.