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weems

Don't Hate Cena, Hate Everybody Else...

Rating: 4 votes, 1.75 average.
We have all heard the complaints about Cena a million times. 5 moves of doom, needs a heel turn, same gimmick of hero making the comeback to defeat the villain, character has went stale, etc. Realistically, the biggest problem that Cena has is a lack of competition within the WWE. Yes, you read that correctly. WWE’s roster is too weak at the top of the card. Austin had Rock, Bret, Taker, HHH and Foley. Hogan had Andre, Savage, Sting, Flair and Iron Sheik. Cena has Punk and well.....that's it right now.

Let's look at Cena's resume since the beginning of 2012

Since the beginning of 2012, Cena has had great feuds with Punk and Rock. The primary reason is that both men are equally as good (if not better) as Cena on the mic. Nobody else on the current roster is even comparable to these three men on the stick. As a result, everyone else is not able to help get Cena over. More specifically, the man feuding against Cena is not able to get the angle over. Quality promos, mutual dislike and built up animosity generates PPV buys. When Cena is so much better on the mic than the wrestler he is going to face at the PPV,it makes for uninteresting TV.

However, it is not Cena's fault that he continues to do the same dog and pony show. Realistically, it is his opponent's fault for not elevating their game when put into the top spot. If Cena's opponents would consistently seize the ball and get over, Cena would eventually lose his #1 spot. As a result, Cena would have to change his craft and alter his gimmick. There have been times when Cena's opponent took advantage of their push. As you can recall, Cena had some very good feuds (although short) with Bryan, Lesner and Henry. Historically, these 3 men are not known for being good talkers. However, when they feuded with Cena, they found a way to make it work. Mark Henry who has always been bad on the mic, cut the promo of his life and for the first time in his career, found a way to promote a match by using the stick. Meanwhile, the 2012 match at Extreme Rules with Lesner worked because Paul Heyman is another rare breed that can go toe to toe with Cena on the mic. Lastly, Daniel Bryan has elevated his mic skills to where he can hold his own with anyone in the industry. He turned the table on Cena for their SS match by making himself the underdog and clear fan favorite.

On the other hand, Cena had some very forgettable feuds since 2012. For example, Ryback, Ziggler and Kane. Ryback is way too green on the mic. Nobody cared about this feud because of how poorly it was promoted. More specifically, Ryback was not able to use this stage to get himself over. As a result, Ryback could not make the fans believe he is indeed a main event talent. Likewise, Cena’s short feud with Ziggler at TLC 2012 was forgettable because Ziggler is also extremely weak on the mic. As a result, Ziggler had Vickie do the majority of the talking on his behalf to promote this match. Unfortunately, while Vickie is better than Dolph on the mic, she still is not in Cena’s league. When it was time for the PPV, there was just not enough animosity built up between Cena and Ziggler/Vickie for the fans to be completely engaged in the match. Cena also had a short and very boring feud with Kane where he was going to “embrace the hate.” I give WWE credit for realizing that Kane is not a promo guy so they tried to build the match by having Kane reintroduce the mask, be booked as a monster heel and decimate Cena’s kayfabe best friend Zach Ryder week after week. However, that type of animosity is not what sells tickets anymore. The fans want something that is more personal and expressed through promos. This is why the feuds with Bryan, Rock and Punk were so good.

In summary, I am getting tired of hearing the fans complain that Cena is stale and needs a gimmick change. This does not mean that WWE has not overexposed him. In fact, I think they have completely overexposed Cena. Unfortunately, the primary reason for this overexposure is the result of the other guys at the top of the card being too weak to work in the main event spot. It will be interesting to see what happens during Cena’s absence over the next few months while his body heals up. Fortunately, Punk and Bryan have really elevated their game the last couple of years and appear that they can be more than capable of working in the top spot. Perhaps Orton can be put into this elite group as well since he works much better as a heel. On the other hand, guys like Sheamus, Del Rio, Ziggler, Miz, Big Show, Ryback, Kane, etc. have had their chance. If just two of these guys were good enough to get themselves over like Punk and Bryan have, perhaps Cena would have altered his gimmick by now. Unfortunately, the top of the WWE roster is weak and these boys are working toward the top of the card opposed to in the middle. Perhaps a couple years from now, Sandow, Rhodes, Ambrose, Rollins, Reigns, Bray Wyatt or some of the other new guys will be able to elevate their game and rise to that elite, main event spot. If not, VKM will continue to pay part-timers big cash while WWE attempts to develop younger talent that can.

In closing, make a mental note the next time Cena does the same dog and pony show. Say to yourself, "Why can't anybody else come up with anything better than this to become more popular?" Then say to yourself, "Is it really Cena that I hate? Or perhaps, is it the other guy in the ring with him holding a mic that is significantly more uninteresting?"

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  1. K2Jelly's Avatar
    Though I do find your stance on Cena hate to be interesting, that doesn't make it any more myopic than those who wholly hate Cena and no one else. I don't think you necessarily understand what your last statement implies. It's not like Cena haters just got out of bed today or even last year and started hating the guy. This has been happening for YEARS. Are you really suggesting that all the times that they've found Cena to be interesting is because of his opponent rather than what his character lacks or exhibits? Granted, a better main event division COULD help him get over with the haters but it's not a guaranteed solution.

    In short, although I think you've grasped unto somewhat of a legitimate reason as to why Cena lacks appeal to such a large demographic of WWE/wrestling fans, it doesn't help that definitively stating that hating Cena is a problem but blaming more than one talent isn't, that doesn't necessarily come off as an opinion that has utilized a significant amount of foresight to construct in the first place.
  2. DK Wrestling Savior's Avatar
    This blog was interesting. I'm not sure I agree with why people hate Cena, but I do agree with the lack of any kind of anything at the top of the roster. Cena is just above and beyond everyone in WWE...there's really not even a close second. I get the fans cheer Punk and Bryan and they're just as over right now, but ultimately, Cena is the whole package. Great mic skills, stronger than just about everyone, and every bit as athletic. Punk is better on the mic and more diverse in the ring, but he's not as big or strong. Bryan is better technically, but nowhere near his level in mic skills or size and strength.

    One thing I agree completely with, is The Rock was the only true competition for Cena on all levels. Rock has size, works similarly in the ring, and works the mic better than Cena...possibly better than anyone I've ever seen.

    You're right on with this one. I don't hate Cena. I don't love him either...but I recognize the top man, and the one who carries the company by himself, when I see it.
  3. weems's Avatar
    Quote Originally Posted by K2Jelly
    Though I do find your stance on Cena hate to be interesting, that doesn't make it any more myopic than those who wholly hate Cena and no one else. I don't think you necessarily understand what your last statement implies. It's not like Cena haters just got out of bed today or even last year and started hating the guy. This has been happening for YEARS. Are you really suggesting that all the times that they've found Cena to be interesting is because of his opponent rather than what his character lacks or exhibits? Granted, a better main event division COULD help him get over with the haters but it's not a guaranteed solution.

    In short, although I think you've grasped unto somewhat of a legitimate reason as to why Cena lacks appeal to such a large demographic of WWE/wrestling fans, it doesn't help that definitively stating that hating Cena is a problem but blaming more than one talent isn't, that doesn't necessarily come off as an opinion that has utilized a significant amount of foresight to construct in the first place.
    Every fan has a right to their opinion and there is nothing wrong with loving or hating Cena. Hate him because he is corny, hate him because he is overexposed or hate him because you opt to cheer for the heels instead of the faces. But don't hate him because of his gimmick. Cena has no reason to change his gimmick b/c the competition has not forced him to yet. Pretend that Hogan, Austin, Rock, Sting, Bret, Goldberg, Savage and Flair were all 35 years old right now. Then, pretend they were all full-time wrestlers on WWE's roster. Cena would be forced to reinvent himself b/c these guys would knock him out of the #1 spot. Unfortunately, Cena continues to do the same routine year after year because he has no reason not to. What incentive is there for Cena to change when he is #1 in popularity and merchandise?
  4. The Hipster's Avatar
    Spot on! Cena gets bashed but people love to hate him. Also, many of his matches started with him getting booed then cheered by the end. Cena has carried the company and I totally agree with others having to step up to his game. I like Cena but am not a die hard fan. The ICW creams themselves over guys one week and then turns on them just as fast. Wrestlers need to sustain themselves for years character change or not, Cena has done that.
  5. Skunk's Avatar
    I wouldn't hate cena so much if all his matches didn't end the same way, if his promos didn't come across as Wwe PR bullshit, if he didn't react the exact same way to whatever situation, promo, whatever he was involved with and if more attention was paid to the undercard (better, more consistent stories, more emphasis on the other titles - because if Cena spends his time either being champion or looking to be champion i need something else to invest in).

    He doesn't even have a gimmick right now. His PR boy scout attitude is his gimmick and it's impossible to take his character or whatever story he's involved in because he's bland he doesn't do much to evolve the feud he's in and then he wins and they immediately move on the next.
  6. TheGreatOne's Avatar
    Looking back at this Summer of Punk along with Bryan. Look how both ended with with a MITB cash in both losing the WWE title after defeating Cena. Did that help Punk out not getting his rematch til Survivor Series. Hopefully Bryan wins the belt back at NOC or before Survivor Series so he can have a rematch with Cena. Why Bryan didn't win with the yes, no, whatever lock is beyond me. I mean, his elbow is a tennis ball and it was hurt. Tapping out to that with that injury going into Summerslam wouldn't have hurt Cena. Well at least, in my eyes it wouldn't have.

    I like the blog and agree with most of your points. I just hope WWE doesnt screw this up like they have in the past with Ziggler and Punk winning the big one finally.....just taken right out from under him. Ziggler injury was a problem, but I was ready for his world title run. Sucks the way it ended like it never happened.

    Hopefully they don't screw over Bryan.
  7. marooned's Avatar
    Great read, felt like it was written by me.()spot on, can't agree with you more.
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