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By Arune Singh
When you hear the phrase "Strongest There Is," you probably think of the Hulk; however, if you're a fan of World Wrestling Entertainment and their dynamic Superstars, that title belongs to Mark Henry, awarded the title "World's Strongest Man" after his feats of strength at the 1992 Olympics and the Arnold Schwarzenegger Strongest Man Contest.
A lifelong Marvel fan, Henry's excited for the upcoming Fall of the Hulks epic kicking off in December and has already started anticipating the incredible matchups. Henry's WWE fans have also reached salivation at the thought of his team's matchup with Randy Orton's squad of Superstars at the Survivor Series pay-per-view this Sunday, November 22nd. To celebrate both events, Marvel.com spoke with Henry about hypothetical battles between the strongest, smartest and toughest Marvel characters and WWE Superstars.
Skaar, Son of Hulk
A noted Hulk fan who cites "Planet Hulk" as one of his favorite comic book stories ever, Mark Henry would leap at the chance to join his brethren in battle with the Green Goliath and his ilk.
"I would keep the Green [Scar, Hulk's name on Sakaar in "Planet Hulk"] for me because when it comes to strength like it did [there], we're the main event. I think Big Show would hold his own against Samson; Batista, being the lightest of the crew, would go to a stalemate with Skaar; and I'd put Cena in a place where he didn't get eaten up, but put up a good fight. The Red Hulk versus John Cena definitely qualifies. Who knows what they'd do to each other?"
But, when it came down to the main event, the confident former Olympian knows who'd win.
"Hulk and I would go toe to toe, punch for punch, but as a big fan I'd never put myself over him," Henry laughs. "I'll go out and say that Mark Henry did the job to the Green Scar."
Smartest There Is
Henry's quick to note that Chris Jericho, one half of the current WWE Unified Tag Team Champions, not only has smarts to spare, but he's also one of the craftiest competitors in WWE.
"I'd put Chris against Doctor Doom because they're both cunning and physical guys who always have a trick up their sleeves. I can see him and Doom fighting it out to see who can withstand the most torment. Edge would match up well against the Leader, but when it comes to smarts, there aren't many people who top the Leader. Meanwhile, Christian's a great ECW Champion and a real fighter, but the Wizard has so many surprises that I don't know who'd win. Finally, I think team WWE triumphs when M.O.D.O.K. does the job to Triple H and feels the Pedigree, [Triple H's finishing maneuver]."
Toughest There Is
The third and final war between Marvel characters and WWE Superstars runs the closest, according to Henry.
"I'd call it a draw. Beth Phoenix would take any of the She-Hulks to the limit, but I'm not sure Alicia Fox would survive the ordeal," he notes with a chuckle. "Mickie would escape narrowly with a victory against Thundra. As for Gail Kim, while she's quick, I've found that in battles between strength and speed, it's speed that wears out and strength that endures."
This Sunday, Henry's got a place on Team Kofi, led by the red-hot Kofi Kingston and flanked by MVP, R-Truth and Christian.
MVP and Henry form the tag team dubbed "PowerBallin'," a team that the "World's Strongest Man" believes has become a hit because they have no weaknesses.
"No one's dumb, slow or weak. When people see strength like that, they think of the Legion of Doom, the Road Warriors-that's how they look at our team: an indestructible unit that's gonna grab the Unified Tag Titles at some point. We need our rematch against [ current champions Chris Jericho and Big Show]."
If there were a corollary for PowerBallin' in the Marvel Universe, there's only one team Henry would choose: the Heroes For Hire.
Mark Henry assures fans that 2010 will be the year of PowerBallin', as the team looks to steamroll through all their opponents in the WWE Universe. But when it comes to the Marvel Universe, there's only one opponent Henry would like to face.
"It's gotta be the Hulk. He's the standard to be judged by as far as super heroes go because no matter how tough you are, the madder he gets, the stronger and bigger he gets. A war between Mark Henry and the Hulk would last an eternity. Strength versus strength, neither of us would give an inch and no matter the outcome, you know the fans would be on the edge of their seats."
FALL OF THE HULKS begins on December 2nd in FALL OF THE HULKS ALPHA, then smashing to another level in HULK #18 and FALL OF THE HULKS GAMMA.
And don't miss SURVIVOR SERIES on Pay-Per-View this Sunday. November 22nd! Check WWE.com for info on how to order.
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