Video: John Cena Announces Entry into WWE Royal Rumble 2019 on Raw

Joseph Zucker@@JosephZuckerFeatured ColumnistJanuary 8, 2019

John Cena (R) competes with Triple H (L) during the World Wrestling Entertainment (WWE) Greatest Royal Rumble event in the Saudi coastal city of Jeddah on April 27, 2018. (Photo by STRINGER / AFP)        (Photo credit should read STRINGER/AFP/Getty Images)
STRINGER/Getty Images

John Cena announced his intention to enter the multi-man match at the WWE Royal Rumble pay-per-view on Jan. 27. 

The Cenation Leader opened WWE Raw on Monday night to say he's competing in the 30-man Battle Royal to earn his way onto the WrestleMania 35 card.

Cena's acting career has taken up more of his time in recent years. The 16-time world champion was open in a December interview with Sports Illustrated's Dan Greene about how he's "in the phase where I'm handing the stick off" to younger wrestlers.

Still, the 41-year-old has consistently made the effort to show up during WrestleMania season.

He competed in the 2018 Royal Rumble match and lasted nearly half an hour. He even challenged for the Universal Championship in a seven-man Elimination Chamber match a month later. The veteran also lost to The Undertaker in what amounted to a squash match at WrestleMania 34.

Cena essentially has a standing invitation to WrestleMania every year, but it's hard to see where he'll fit into this year's event. The Undertaker was basically the last major WWE star he hadn't wrestled on a big stage, and The Deadman's age (53) and physical limitations meant that was always going to be an underwhelming occasion.

AJ Styles or Shinsuke Nakamura would've been two "dream-match" opponents for Cena given they were the biggest stars of TNA and New Japan Pro-Wrestling, respectively, before arriving in WWE.

However, The Champ has already feuded with Styles and battled Nakamura in a highly publicized battle on SmackDown Live in 2017.

If Cena is looking to pass the proverbial torch to younger stars, though, WrestleMania 35 could be an opportunity for him to christen one of WWE's biggest up-and-coming names.

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