Samoa Joe is one of the most dominant and respected wrestlers in the world today. He has competed in various promotions such as Ring of Honor, Impact Wrestling, NXT and WWE, where he is currently a part of the SmackDown roster. He is known for his hard-hitting style, his submission skills and his charisma on the mic.
But is Samoa Joe related to The Rock, the most electrifying man in sports entertainment and one of the biggest stars in Hollywood? The answer is no. Samoa Joe has no blood relation to The Rock or any other member of the famous Anoa’i family, which includes legends like Rikishi, Yokozuna, Roman Reigns and The Usos.
Samoa Joe’s Background and Family
Samoa Joe, whose real name is Nuufolau Joel Seanoa, was born in Orange County, California to parents who operated a Polynesian dance troupe named Tiare Productions. He is of Samoan descent on his father’s side and has German, Irish and Native Hawaiian ancestry on his mother’s side. He is a first-generation wrestler who started his training at Ultimate Pro Wrestling, a WWE developmental territory at the time.
Samoa Joe then honed his craft in Japan, where he wrestled for Pro Wrestling Zero-One and Pro Wrestling Noah. He became a star in the independent scene, especially in Ring of Honor, where he had a record-breaking 645-day reign as the ROH World Champion. He also made a name for himself in Impact Wrestling (formerly TNA), where he was the first-ever TNA Grand Slam Champion and had classic matches with AJ Styles, Kurt Angle and Sting.
Samoa Joe signed with NXT in 2015 and became a two-time NXT Champion, feuding with Finn Balor and Shinsuke Nakamura. He was promoted to the main roster in 2017 as part of Raw, where he challenged for the Universal Championship and the WWE Championship. He also had memorable rivalries with Brock Lesnar, Seth Rollins and Rey Mysterio. He moved to SmackDown in 2021 after a brief stint as an NXT commentator.
The Anoa’i Family and Their Legacy
The Anoa’i family is one of the most influential and successful wrestling dynasties in history. It all started with The High Chief Peter Maivia, who was a Samoan-born wrestler and promoter who worked in various territories around the world. He was also the grandfather of The Rock, whose father Rocky Johnson was a Canadian wrestler of African descent.
The High Chief trained his nephews Afa and Sika, who became known as The Wild Samoans. They were one of the most dominant tag teams in the 1970s and 1980s, winning multiple championships in WWE, NWA and other promotions. They also founded the Wild Samoan Training Center, where they trained many future stars such as Batista, Rusev and their own sons.
The Wild Samoans had several siblings and cousins who also became wrestlers, such as The Tonga Kid, Rikishi, Umaga and Yokozuna. Rikishi’s sons are Jimmy and Jey Uso, who are currently one of the best tag teams in WWE and part of The Bloodline faction with their cousin Roman Reigns. Reigns is the son of Sika and the current WWE Universal Champion.
The Anoa’i family also has some members who are related by marriage, such as Jimmy Snuka (Tamina’s father), Naomi (Jimmy Uso’s wife) and Nia Jax (The Rock’s cousin). They have also adopted some honorary members into their clan, such as Haku (Tonga Kid’s uncle) and Jacob Fatu (Rikishi’s nephew).
Samoa Joe is not related to The Rock or any other member of the Anoa’i family. He is a self-made wrestler who has earned his reputation and respect through his own hard work and talent. However, he does share a common bond with them through their Samoan heritage and their passion for wrestling. According to Sportskeeda, Samoa Joe once said: