Road To WrestleMania XXX – John Cena

John Cena's WrestleMania

Via WWE.com

John Cena’s WrestleMania career didn’t technically get started until WrestleMania XX, but he hasn’t missed one since. Let’s take a look at Cena’s Mania career.

John Cena’s WrestleMania career

Technically, John Cena’s first WrestleMania match wasn’t until 2004 against the Big Show at WrestleMania XX. But he was at WrestleMania 19. He just didn’t wrestle.

There was talk that he was going to have a “rap battle” with Fabolous (which Fabolous has shot down by the way). Instead, on Sunday Night Heat, he battled cardboard cutouts of Jay-Z’s face on top of Austin Powers and Fabolos’ face on top of Mini Me. The rhymes were juvenile (no, not that Juvenile) and listened to with today’s ears, nearly homophobic. He’s also lucky Fabolous didn’t get the memo.


John Cena Wrestlemania 19 rap by PWF

He and Big Show opened up the PPV version of WrestleMania XX for the US title. Cena would win his first title, pinning Big Show after two FUs. Before the second, he used brass knux to knock Show off-balanced.

At WrestleMania 21, he faced JBL for the WWE title. After he beat JBL for the title, he was firmly entrenched in the main event title picture. Cena was eliminated last by Batista at Royal Rumble, so in order to get the title shot at WrestleMania, he had to first beat Kurt Angle for the number one contender spot, which he did. The JBL match wasn’t anything great, but it helped put him over, much like his victory over show. That was the early story of his WrestleMania matches. In each of his first four WrestleMania matches, the person he was facing put him over, giving him more credibility than he had before being in the ring.

At WrestleMania 22, it was a victory over Triple H. And at WrestleMania 23, it was a win over Shawn Michaels. Both matches “made” him in a sense. He was the most over wrestler on the roster, but by beating the two greats, it cemented him to some of the naysayers.

In 2007, Cena tore his pec and had to forfeit his title. Based on the normal time frame of a pec tear, it was thought that he’d miss WrestleMania. In fact, he not only didn’t miss WrestleMania 24, he was back three months prior as the surprise entrant at the Royal Rumble, winning it when he threw Triple H over the top rope. Rather than cashing his championship title shot in at WrestleMania, Cena wanted it at No Way Out. Randy Orton was the champ and when Cena didn’t win the title at No Way Out (he won by DQ), he was supposed to be out of the WrestleMania match. Instead, it became a three-way with Orton, Cena, and Triple H and Cena was pinned by Orton who retained.

By the time WrestleMania 25 came around, Cena had another injury, this time to his neck, won and lost the World title and then regained it in another triple threat, but this time against the Big Show and Edge. At WrestleMania 26, he faced Batista who beat Cena for the World title on the previous PPV, Elimination Chamber. Cena defended the title in the cage match and after the match, Vince McMahon made the exhausted Cena defend it immediately against Batista who beat him. Cena won the title back in an excellent match, which was a rematch of their SummerSlam match the previous year.

At WrestleMania 27, he faced the Miz, but really, the match was a setup for a three-WrestleMania feud with the Rock. The Rock was the host of the show and his toe-to-toe promo battle with Cena overshadowed the actual match with the Miz. Originally, the match ended up as a double count-out, but Rock came out and restarted the match, only to give Cena a Rock Bottom, allowing the Miz to beat Cena and keep his title.

During the match, the Miz was knocked out legit and talked about it on a podcast with Chris Jericho.

At WrestleMania 28, the main event featured the very first (and once in a lifetime) match between the Rock and John Cena. The match was a huge success as it became the second most successful WrestleMania show in history based on PPV buys, only second to WrestleMania 23, which was boosted by Donald Trump’s participation. Cena attempted to insult Rock by beating him with his own move, yet was set up to hit the People’s Elbow, but Rock hit the Rock Bottom for the win.

WWE scheduled the “third” arc between the Rock and John Cena at WrestleMania 29. Rock beat CM Punk to win the WWE title at Royal Rumble while Cena won the battle royal match. Rock beat Punk again at Elimination Chamber, setting up their match. It wasn’t as successful as the previous year, though they still did good business. This time, Cena finally beat the Rock after successive FUs.

Best WrestleMania match

I think many people would say that Cena’s match with Shawn Michaels was his best match, but I’m going to choose a different one. My favorite John Cena WrestleMania match is the one he had with Batista at WrestleMania 26. The match felt like a big deal in an irresistible force meets the immovable object kind of way.


WWE Wrestlemania 26 John Cena vs Batista WWE… by EmilMoellerM

WrestleMania XXX

Cena won’t be in the biggest match at WrestleMania XXX, but he’s surely in one of the most important. Like Big Show, JBL, Triple H, Shawn Michaels, and the Rock have done for him before, he can help make and cement Bray Wyatt as a main player. I don’t know if we’ll ever see a time when John Cena isn’t a main eventer, so no one should be worried about a loss here. His job should be to make a player.

Previous profiles
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