Top 5: WWE Superstars Who Could Benefit From John Cena’s Absence

Sometimes, you just need to get away. That’s exactly what it appears John Cena will be doing following this month’s WWE Hell in a Cell pay-per-view. The current five-time...

Sometimes, you just need to get away. That’s exactly what it appears John Cena will be doing following this month’s WWE Hell in a Cell pay-per-view.

The current five-time United States Champion is not being scheduled for any events after the European tour set to begin on Nov. 4 and is not scheduled to appear on the Nov. 2 episode of Raw. Instead, it seems as though he is heading towards some much deserved time off.

Much debate has been made over how WWE will look to counteract the ratings decline, which is partly seasonal and due to a lack of mainstream interest in the product. While Cena’s absence from television won’t help the cause, it will leave a void begging to be filled by an opportunistic WWE Superstar who is ready and willing to take their game to the next level.

Here’s a look at five wrestlers who could stand to benefit the most from Cena’s absence:

5. Roman Reigns

Vince McMahon and the rest of WWE’s higher-ups believe Reigns has similar superstar qualities to that of John Cena. Therefore, wouldn’t it make sense for Reigns to be elevated in Cena’s absence? Yes and no. It’s all a question of whether or not he is “ready,” and as this year’s Royal Rumble proved, the fans did not think Reigns was fit to slide into such a prestigious spot on the card. It’s important to remember, however, that the Royal Rumble happened nearly ten months ago. Reigns has improved since then. The Wyatt Family feud, while having its ups and downs, will prove to be good for Reigns’ career. With that feud seemingly ready to come to a close, it might be time for Reigns to make the leap.

4. Cesaro

When you consider the quality of Cesaro’s matches over the past two years, his newfound connection with the fans, and the endorsement he recently received from Cena himself, one would think that “The Swiss Superman” would find himself at the number-one spot on this list without much opposition. The problem is that for whatever reason, Kevin Dunn and the backstage forces do not find him marketable enough to carry a spot in the main event.

The issue is that there have been guys that the WWE have aggressively pushed in the past to minimal results, yet guys as talented as Cesaro don’t receive the same backing. Whenever it does look like the company is about to swallow its pride and push the man, they get cold feet and discontinue the momentum abruptly.

Now it appears as though Cesaro is in the doghouse. What for? We may never know.

But in a perfect world with all things being equal, Cesaro definitely checks off all the boxes for a guy that could slide into Cena’s spot on the card and instantly thrive.

3. Samoa Joe

The absence of Cena could also be a prime chance for WWE to bring a new face into the mix in an attempt to shake things up. There is no question that Samoa Joe is ready for the main roster. He’s prepped his entire career for a moment like what he could have on his hands if creative decides to dip their hand into the well of talent that is NXT.

Picture Cena taking care of business like usual up until early November. Having Samoa Joe answer the open challenge would work on several levels. He’s got built-in notoriety and has a believable-enough presence that he could “injure” Cena in their match, whether it be by brute force or holding on to the Coquina Clutch after the bell rings. He is also a good enough worker that he could meet the standard of excellence that Cena has set since becoming WWE World Heavyweight Champion at WrestleMania 21.

When Cena is ready to return, the table will be set for what could be a highly entertaining series of matches.

2. Randy Orton

Who is talented, employed, and lacking a story arc at the present moment? Randy Orton.

Orton’s past work speaks for itself, as he has been able to reinvent himself time and time again. The problem? The lack of star power has placed him in a league of his own where he is not at the level of a Cena. but also firmly ahead of the rest roster. He and Seth Rollins have worked together before, but their feud petered out after the creative team failed to give it the meaning it deserved. It is not as if he has lost a step, however.

His late-summer matches with Sheamus were technically good, albeit vanilla due to Sheamus’ dulling presence. Now with his star power in demand, Orton could find himself in a ripe position to reinvent himself once more and bring meaning back to his illustrious career.

1. Dean Ambrose

“The Lunatic Fringe” seems to be the most logical choice for a guy that could stand to benefit from a Cena vacation.

Here’s what we know: Ambrose is perfectly capable of getting over, as seen at Elimination Chamber earlier this year. His ring work and psychology, while imperfect, is at least sustainable at the top of the card. He’s a supplementary piece in the Roman Reigns-Bray Wyatt feud, who also has history with Rollins and has shown interest in tertiary championships in the past.

If given the chance, there is no doubt that Ambrose would keep the belt “warm” for Cena, while also increasing his own stock in the process. columnist Jack Goodwillie can be reached at . Follow him on Twitter at .

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