WWE Hot Take: John Cena Can Fix the Roman Reigns Domination Problem

Chris Roling@@Chris_RolingFeatured ColumnistMay 21, 2022


John Cena might once again be the biggest problem-solver for WWE

It sounds a little strange to say because he's such a draw and the company's top guy, but WWE has a Roman Reigns problem on its hands.

Nobody on the normal roster is a believable threat to Reigns. He's bested pretty much everyone of note during this historic rein, be it Kevin Owens, Finn Balor's The Demon and now Brock Lesnar, after a feud that derailed the entire top of the men's division and dominated the entire run to WrestleMania. 

Cena is one of the only guys capable of still getting in a wrestling ring and taking down Reigns in a believable manner at this point. Fitting, considering he just had an interview in which he talked about how he's been away for too long and would like to come back. 

Cena noted the following to Adam Glyn of the Adam's Apple podcast (h/t Fightful's Robert DeFelice):

"Oh, soon. I know in WWE, I turn 20 pretty soon so that's a pretty big thing. From a pretty storied class of folksBatista, Randy Orton, Brock [Lesnar]we kind of all turn 20 this year, so I'm aware that that's coming around the corner, and who knows, but it's one of those hard truths to bear. There's a lot of cool stuff going on, and I don't want to say no to any opportunities that are on my doorstep. So I don't know when I'll be back. But hopefully, it's soon. I've been gone for too long."

Talk about a get-out-of-jail-free card for WWE. Sure, Cena could just get involved with the likes of Randy Orton while celebrating the big anniversary. 

Or, he could come back, challenge Reigns for one of the titles and win it. 

It doesn't get much easier than that. Cena could pull off an upset, perhaps with some shenanigans via outside interference (or maybe a heel turn, right guys?) and steal one of the titles. He could then take said title back to the opposite brand, resetting the main event scene, and then work some of those feuds with the likes of Orton. 

In the process of this, Reigns wouldn't lose much steam. In fact, his character could just laugh it off as losing a title that doesn't even belong on his show—a relic he stole from Lesnar that he didn't really care for, perhaps. 

Maybe WWE takes it a step further with Cena as the problem-solver, too. While a feud with Orton would of course be historic, he could drop the title to a Money in the Bank briefcase cash-in used by a fast-rising talent. 

Wishful thinking, perhaps, but this sort of timeline would help correct the mistake that was putting two titles on one guy (while too scared to actually unify them), get programming back to normal for the men's divisions and enable Cena to only stick around for a few months before getting back to Hollywood. 

Along the way, it would be pretty hard for WWE to complain about the added boost of star power to what is normally a pretty quiet time on the calendar. Sure, WWE would probably like to save Cena for something much bigger like a 'Mania if they only get him once a year, but this would make lesser events feel more important and likely earn them more viewers than usual. 

That's the other thing to consider—the bump to weekly viewership in what is usually a lull for WWE. Cena's back with a title and feuding with the roster? Reigns is on a revenge tour after a loss? A MiTB winner could cash-in on Cena at any time? That's captivating and (somehow, in 2022) refreshing content to watch live. 

Again, the term wishful thinking applies to all of this. But there aren't many reasonable ways for WWE to book itself out of this problem, unless the plan is to really have Reigns keep both titles through next WrestleMania after beating The Rock. 

Presumably, WWE can't afford to handicap its men's division for that long. With Cena publicly chatting about a return, he looks like the best possible fix.