So, Cena has some chips cleaned out of his elbow and his time out goes from two to six weeks.
And it begins…
The only opponent every wrestler eventually puts over is Father Time, no matter the era, territory or place on the card. Cena may still have years but Time gets his hand raised in the end.
But as every wrestler faces their inevitable end, the owner of the company they work for lies awake at night fearing the inevitable task… how to replace the star.
How did Vince McMahon replace Bruno Sammartino, Bob Backlund, Hulk Hogan, Shawn Michaels, Bret Hart, Stone Cold Steve Austin, the Undertaker, the Rock…?
He didn’t. He just plugged someone into that spot. That’s not to say Vince didn’t sweat and worry each time. How do you replace Hogan? Between Bret Hart, Kevin Nash and Lex Luger, it was tough.
Vince doesn’t have magic pixie dust that he throws on whomever he deems ready for the throne. Ascension happens organically, not scientifically. The point of this analysis is that someone will become the next Cena because he was the next Rock, who was the next Austin, who was the next Bret Hart, etc.
Which leads me to wonder if there is someone on the roster who is being held back, just in case…?
I think that guy could be Dolph Ziggler. Even though I hate, hate, hate his name, I have to believe that he can be the guy to step into that spot. He hasn’t done too much, hardly been overexposed and has all the intangibles.
But if it’s agreed that Ziggler can be “the next”, can he get there with that name? Now, when Stone Cold became “the next”, he wasn’t hand-picked, anointed or chosen. He just became the man on his own. He hated the Ringmaster gimmick, hated the music and refused to put it over. Remember how he used to stand in the corner and not react at all? Can Ziggler do the same thing? Can Dolph do an “Austin” and dare them to rebrand him? While this is not 1996 anymore in the WWE, if it worked for Austin, Ziggler (and Vince) always has an excuse.
I have to wonder if there will be a power struggle to name “the next” from within the McMahon family. Think about it… if there is not universal agreement on who will fill that spot, who gets to make the final call? Vince, Hunter, Steph?
Chances are, this will be Vince’s last call but if Vince chooses someone, can Hunter/Steph pull the plug on that decision after they pull the plug on Vince?
In the words of Jim Ross, “now that’s a soundbyte”.
But back to the point, there are only whispers at this point about who will replace Cena. They do have some time but not forever. So, do Vince and Hunter/Steph agree on who that will be? If not, is there lobbying for a personal favorite? If Hunter/Steph are given that decision to make from Vince, will he truly support the kids’ call?
McMahon’s ego is large enough that he would bury his kids to get himself over (see “McMahon, Shane”) and I can see him crapping on their call if they pick someone he doesn’t agree with. Not to their faces, of course. But no old boss should be left to hang around and given chance to second guess the new administration but how can they kick Vince out? It may take a super-sized Myocardial infarction and the peeling of the pencil from his cold, dead hand to say bye-bye to VKM.
Each side wants to put their brand on the logo with the decision on who will eventually supplant John Cena as “the man”. My money is on a newly named Dolph Ziggler. Who do you think it will be?
Let me know your thoughts @RealKevinKelly on Twitter.