Game Rating: 88
HEIGHT: 6'0" WEIGHT: 212 lbs.
FROM: Ghana, West Africa
FINISHER: Trouble in Paradise
FIRST WWE GAME: WWE SmackDown vs. Raw 2009
CAREER HIGHLIGHTS: Intercontinental Champion; World Tag Team Champion; United States Champion; WWE Tag Team Champion
The energy contained within one Kofi Kingston could power a major city for several years.
A Ghanaian grappler with a beaming smile, Kingston’s boundless enthusiasm is only rivaled by his limitless athleticism, which he displays fearlessly every time he steps in the ring to the delight of the entire WWE Universe. In fact, the only people who don’t like Kofi Kingston are the Superstars he faces each week — and that’s only because they can rarely catch him. The leader of the Boom Squad’s dazzling aerials only belie what is actually a truly fierce fighter, who can curtail the smiles to kick it up in intensity if an opponent is foolish enough to set him off.
Randy Orton, for example, tested Kofi’s patience in late 2009, and paid for it when Kofi defaced The Viper’s customized NASCAR before targeting Orton himself, leaping off a balcony at Madison Square Garden and splintering him through a table. Kofi’s determination makes him a legitimate threat, and repeated favorite, in the annual Money in the Bank Ladder Matches, even though he’s yet to snag the coveted briefcase amid his rampant boom-dropping. His creativity to survive in the Royal Rumble Match — like walking on his hands, lunging onto an eliminated Superstar’s back or using a chair as a pogo stick — has quickly grown into an institution at the yearly January event.
Kofi jumped to the tag team division in 2011, forming championship tandems with Evan Bourne and R-Truth. It was no surprise these duos drew comparisons to classic teams like The Rockers and The British Bulldogs.
A multi-time Intercontinental and U.S. Champion, he returned to his roots as a solo competitor when he chased Intercontinental Champion The Miz off the “Larry King Now” set. Miz took offense, calling Kofi a “B player” who “reached his ceiling.” The comment ignited a fire in The Dreadlocked Dynamo, as he defeated Miz to win his fourth Intercontinental Championship. After winning the rematch at WWE Hell in a Cell, Kingston said Miz’s insults unleashed something he’d been missing, his inner “Wildcat.”
Kingston added a third U.S. Championship to his resume in April 2013, ending Antonio Cesaro’s eight-month reign. Despite getting sidelined with an injury for eight weeks courtesy of an attack from Ryback, Kofi returned on the Aug. 5 episode of Raw, defeating the fleet-footed Fandango. Kingston received an Intercontinental Title opportunity at Night of Champions, but ultimately fell to Curtis Axel in a thrilling bout. It was a minor setback for the high-flyer, but it won’t stop him from shinging brighter — probably because he actually keeps leaping closer and closer to the sun.