The 2014 Royal Rumble represents an important step in the newly unified WWE World Heavyweight Championship. The winner of the title match between Randy Orton and John Cena will only have one more pay-per-view to defend the title before WrestleMania 30.
History shows that the title very rarely changes hands at the final pay-per-view before WrestleMania—of the previous six WWE and World Heavyweight Championship matches at the pay-per-view, not one occasion has the champion left without the belt.
We should, therefore, have a pretty clear idea of who our main event at WrestleMania 30 will be following the Royal Rumble. But regardless of who wins the Rumble match, there is only one logical winner of the championship match—and that is Randy Orton.
John Cena Would Be Better Served Down the Card at WrestleMania
The card for WrestleMania 30 is already starting to look stacked, with a whole host of stars coming back for the biggest event in WWE history. That means some of the company's current top guys may well have to take a hit and move further down the card—John Cena is one of those guys.
In truth, he would be best utilized down the card at Mania. It would give a star factor to the middle of the card if Cena was competing in the middle part of the show, that is for sure.
He also doesn't seem to fit into a potential storyline with any of the guys who could go on to win the Royal Rumble—and with just one main champion in the WWE these days, that is no small matter.
It doesn't matter where John Cena wrestles in terms of acting as a draw—he can do that all across the card. That is what makes him so valuable to the company, in many ways. It's time the WWE started acting upon that and enable some fresh blood to headline pay-per-view shows.
Orton Has History With the Potential Rumble Winners
Another valuable reason why Randy Orton must win at the Royal Rumble is for the state of the championship moving forward.
Some may feel that Orton has failed in his reign as the newly unified champion. Whilst that is up for debate, it may be partly down to the fact he has been consistently feuding with John Cena—a guy many people struggle to relate to, at times.
However, it would almost certainly jump up a notch if Orton was to enter into a rivalry with one of the potential Royal Rumble winners. The most striking and attractive of those options would surely be Batista.
If The Animal returns to win his second Royal Rumble later this month, it is almost a certainty that Orton will beat Cena. Batista vs. Orton at WrestleMania has all the makings of a classic—both in the ring and on the mic.
There is a plethora of options the WWE could introduce to the rivalry to keep it fresh—Ric Flair and Triple H, the former stablemates of Orton and Batista—are just two that immediately spring to mind.
Randy Orton vs. CM Punk was another option that was teased a while back on Raw when chaos broke out at the end of a show—again, if Punk was to win the Rumble, Orton would surely beat Cena.
And whisper it quietly, but there's also a chance of a Daniel Bryan vs. Randy Orton feud restarting.
Orton Needs a Title Run, Cena Does Not
The general consensus is that Randy Orton has struggled to capture the imagination of wrestling fans with this run as the WWE World Heavyweight champion. That is partly down to creative though, who have mysteriously kept him out of action on Raw for several weeks.
That, combined with a puzzling lack of buildup for any of Orton and Cena's feuds, has left the former looking a little bit stale with the belts over his shoulders.
The most recent edition of Raw (Jan. 13) though, suggested that Orton could well have a future as the champion.
His shocking defeat to Kofi Kingston brought out a side to Orton that he plays best of all—the twisted, sadistic heel. His subsequent attack on John Cena's father almost seemed to light a spark into Orton's title reign.
Orton could still become a very good champion—and a rivalry with someone fresh like Batista would go a long way in achieving that. If the belts are taken off him at the Royal Rumble, it is hard to imagine where Orton goes next.
John Cena does not have that problem. Therefore, it is imperative that the company stick by Orton and make him a true champion.