Perhaps no topic in professional wrestling has been more heavily discussed over the past year or two than the feasibility of a John Cena heel turn. The vocal majority maintains that there is no chance that it will happen in the foreseeable future, but the WWE has the perfect opportunity to make it work at WrestleMania 28.
When you really think about it, there isn't a satisfying end to the Cena vs. The Rock match at WrestleMania unless it ends with a Cena heel turn or at least plants the seed for a Cena heel turn. Having The Rock win with no repercussions doesn't advance things in the least, while giving Cena the win and having a "pass-the-torch moment" doesn't make sense since they are supposed to hate each other.
If there were ever a moment and a setting to turn Cena, it is at WrestleMania 28 in The Rock's hometown of Miami. There are several arguments that are made that people constantly use with regards to why a Cena heel turn will never happen, but they can be debunked quite easily.
Cena Draws Too Much Money
The money argument is always a fun one, and while it makes sense, it shouldn't disqualify a Cena heel turn. It's well documented that Cena accounts for millions upon millions of dollars for the company in terms of merchandise, ticket and pay-per-view sales.
If Cena turns he will be equally as popular, but it will simply flip his support. Instead of adults booing him and kids loving him, it will be the other way around. At the same time, though, it isn't as if all the kids who love him will immediately abandon him if he turns. They already love Cena, and while the goal of a heel is to get people to hate them, the kids aren't going to leave Cena cold turkey.
On top of that, it's ridiculous to think that a heel turn wouldn't be a huge money maker. When Hulk Hogan turned heel in WCW it led to a golden age in the company's history. That isn't to say that the same would happen to WWE, but the interest and buzz that would be created by Cena turning heel would offset any loss in merchandise sales. Not to mention, it would supplant "Stone Cold" Steve Austin's heel turn as the most shocking moment in WrestleMania history.
Cena Gets Booed so He's Already a Heel
This particular argument annoys me to know end. Many like to say that Cena is already the equivalent to a heel since he gets booed by half the crowd anyway. That's absolutely preposterous because a heel isn't constituted by the crowd reaction to him, rather it is constituted by the way they act. The reason why so many people boo Cena currently is because they're sick and tired of his antics.
Sure, Cena's mantras of "never give up" and "rise above hate" are great messages for kids, but it doesn't jive with half of the viewing audience, that being adults. He is the face of all faces, much like Hogan was in the mid-1990s and after years and years of the same old thing, the diehards simply want to see a change.
Generating renewed interest in the product is severely underrated when debating a Cena heel turn. While most people who threaten to stop watching because of Cena's ways are just bluffing, some of them are dead serious. Not only will a Cena heel turn draw those people back in, but it very well could bring back Attitude Era fans who were waiting for something to grab on to. A Cena heel turn would be just that.
Rock Will Pass the Torch to Cena
As previously mentioned, the prevailing thought seems to be that The Rock will return the favor for beating Hulk Hogan at WrestleMania 18 as he and Hogan embraced at the match's conclusion. The issue with that, however, is that there was never a true feeling that Rock and Hogan hated each other, while there does seem to be genuine dislike between Rock and Cena.
Because of that, having The Rock lose and shake hands with Cena would be beyond stupid. When you consider how much The Rock has insulted Cena and how many digs Cena has taken at The Rock, it wouldn't make sense for them to forgive and forget. What I could certainly see, though, is a Rock win followed by a Cena heel turn.
On Raw, Cena talked about how important it was for him to win the match and how it meant everything to him. Imagine if The Rock beats Cena and extends his hand to him, only for Cena to snap and attack The Rock in front of 80,000-plus in his hometown of Miami. Not only would this give Cena supreme heat, but it would create a myriad of intriguing storylines for the next year that wouldn't have otherwise been possible.
Say what you will about the WWE never turning Cena heel, but there comes a time for everything in the wrestling business, and if there were ever a time to pull the trigger, this is it.