WWE's Future: Could John Cena Eventually Be Phased out as a Top Star?
One day, John Cena isn't going to be at his physical peak anymore. It isn't going to be for some time as Cena will only be 35 by the end of the year, but it will come one day.
What is the WWE going to do when that happens?
What they have already started in the later half of 2011 when they started pushing CM Punk.
John Cena has hit a point in his career where he doesn't need to be chasing the title. He has reached the level of a Shawn Michaels, not in terms of ring ability, but in terms of popularity with certain fans.
He will be loved by children and hated by older male fans for the rest of his career, no matter what he does.
He could have a horrible match and his fans would forgive him. He could be involved in the most absurd storyline and they would brush it off.
He has reached icon status to the point where he doesn't even need to change his character anymore because his fans don't want him to.
The last few months have seen Cena switch from chasing the title to facing a monster in Kane who seemed otherworldly and trying to help push Zack Ryder as a WWE superstar. For any other wrestler this would be a setback, but for Cena, it is the final step to building his character.
Instead of changing him into a heel or removing his superhero persona, the WWE just needs to create super villains for him to face. For kids, who are a majority of Cena's fans, it is the perfect solution.
Saturday morning cartoons have been on the decline in recent years. As the Internet has taken over and video games have become more prominent, children stopped watching. As of 2012, there are fewer stations showing blocks of cartoons.
Cena could take the place of those cartoons on Monday night.
It doesn't mean that the WWE needs to devote all of the show to building up whatever feud Cena is in or even most of it. They just need to develop a villain who seems indestructible enough to have him square off with Cena.
It won't be something adult fans enjoy, but it's a great way to keep Cena from the title picture while keeping his younger fans happy.
It even helps other wrestlers make more money and gives them another chance to do well in the business. Any number of wrestlers that take on Cena could go on to become a top star in the WWE.
Even if they don't, the title is free and clear, as other wrestlers can compete for it.
Sooner or later, one of them will hold onto it and make those watching replace Cena with someone else while still keeping him as a vital part of the company.
And then the cycle can begin again.
Matthew Hemphill writes for the MMA and professional wrestling portion of Bleacher Report. He also hosts a blog elbaexiled.blogspot.com that focuses on books, music, comic books, video games, film and generally anything that could be related to the realms of nerdom.
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