John Cena left the ring on a stretcher on Monday's Raw following a heated exchange with the Wyatt Family, apparently having suffered some sort of injury to his knee.
The company later posted footage on video service Tout of an ailing Cena being attended to by paramedics, put up a rather vague-sounding article mentioning "swelling" and stating that the star was due to get an MRI.
Initial suspicions were that this was some sort of an angle to promo the upcoming Wyatt-Cena feud. And it would hardly be the first time WWE pulled off something like this.
However, per PWInsider (via WrestlingInc), the injury is a legitimate one and not part of the storyline:
Erick Rowan reportedly grabbed Cena's leg and held it in one position as the weight of his body went the other way as the others attacked him.
After that, Cena, who gutted through the rest of the segment and waved off WWE doctors at ringside, was unable to put weight on his leg. It appeared he may have dislocated or hyper-extended his knee. He was taken out on a stretcher during the commercial and word is that it's not part of the angle.
It nearly goes without saying that if the former WWE champion is out for an extended period of time, the company will suffer greatly. He's really the only top full-time star it has left.
Will WWE be in some trouble without John Cena if he is out for several months?
It couldn't have come at a worse time, either: CM Punk has left and may not be back anytime soon. Dave Batista's much-heralded return has turned into such a flop that Randy Orton is even bringing it up on television. The company is desperately trying to get its new network off the ground. And WrestleMania XXX is taking place in New Orleans in less than six weeks.
Of course, this knee injury could turn out to be something minor, or at the very least something he can work through. No doubt this is what WWE is hoping.
But, even then, it's still a nagging reminder of how injury-prone the 36-year-old has become in recent years...and another sign that he won't be able to be on top forever.
Update: PWTorch is contradicting these claims and saying Cena's injury on the show is a work.