The Delco Elbow Drop

Thursday, December 12, 2013

Raw, Dec 9 - The Authority and John Cena turning heel

Rather than do a recap of the entire episode of Raw this week, leading into Sunday’s Tables, Ladders and Chairs Pay-Per-View, I’m only going to take a look at the most surprising moment of the show. And no, it wasn’t when the Bellas were voted “Diva of the Year” over AJ Lee.

Don’t get me wrong, a majority of the notes I took during Raw had to do with how AJ Lee should win every Slammy but somehow didn’t even win one. I could go on and on about AJ Lee – about how she is the greatest Diva ever and, to turn a quote from Dark Knight, not the Divas champion we deserve but the Divas champion we need – but I’ll stop (for now) and get to the point.

It was announced there would be a “championship ascension ceremony” at the end of Raw. Gathered in the ring was a strange looking group of former world champions (nothing like having Jack Swagger and Great Khali in the same group as guys like Daniel Bryan and CM Punk) to watch as Randy Orton and John Cena face off for the final time before TLC.

During the entire segment, the Seattle crowd was ridiculously hot for Daniel Bryan – so much so that the chants completely derailed Triple H’s promo and caused John Cena to piggyback off the heat, cutting an off the cuff promo playing to the crowd’s affinity for Bryan and offering him a title shot, should he win this Sunday. However, with such a large group of guys in the ring, this segment seemed destined to end much in the same way last week’s contract signing did – only this time the implications of the brawl were much larger. If you didn’t see it on TV, check the video below.

What I and many fans are still trying to piece together is why John Cena was standing with the Authority as Raw went off the air. The answer could simply be “John Cena is a good guy and wanted to help Stephanie.” But many, including myself, see this story taking a much different turn and will deal with WWE’s unicorn – the elusive Cena heel turn.

John Cena, until now, hasn’t been part of the Authority storyline. He was around when it started – when HHH Pedigreed Daniel Bryan after winning the title at Summerslam to let Randy Orton cash in and become the new champion – but he hasn’t been involved since winning the World Heavyweight title and getting in the face of Randy Orton after Survivor Series.

Hold onto your JBL cowboy hats folks cause this is gonna get weird – John Cena has been working for/with the Authority since Summerslam. It sounds crazy (because it is) but here’s how I see this whole thing playing out.

John Cena and Randy Orton have something of a history together. They’ve competed against each other numerous times over the past few years, many times at PPVs and sometimes for championship titles. WWE has even been putting together graphics and video packages lately to remind you of how many times they’ve battled in the past few years. In my eyes, the Authority storylines to “screw over Daniel Bryan” have all been misdirection calculated by Cena to achieve his own goal – destroying Randy Orton.

John Cena's dad's face getting acquainted with Randy Orton's boot

Since Summerslam and Randy cashing in for the WWE Title, what has the Authority been talking about nonstop? What is “best for business” and who will be the “face of the WWE.” And whether you look at it from a kayfabe or non-kayfabe point of view, Cena is already those things. John Cena sells merch. John Cena sells PPVs. Sure people boo him but that just shows they care about him in some way. If people legitimately didn’t care about Cena, he would get the reaction that Curtis Axel gets – utter indifference.

Follow me here – Cena knew he would need time off for surgery after Summerslam but instead of being depressed about time away and dropping the title, he concocted a scheme with the Authority to not only mess with the fans, who he feels turned their back on him, but also destroy an old nemesis in Randy Orton. You see, the only people Cena hates more than Orton is the fans. For years, he’s been the ultimate good guy and role model and what do the fans do in return? Boo him relentlessly, chant “Cena sucks” and lament his winning ways as the worst thing to ever happen to wrestling.

Before Summerslam and even until now, Daniel Bryan has been incredibly over with the fans. Cena saw this and to stick it to them, put Bryan over at Summerslam knowing that it would all be swiftly taken away as he had encouraged the Authority to publicly back Randy Orton as their “face of the WWE.” After Bryan’s win, HHH lays him out with the Pedigree and crowns Orton as the new champion, effectively beginning the build-up of Orton’s confidence while simultaneously screwing over the fans.

Fast forward to Cena’s World Heavyweight title win at Survivor Series. In the meantime, Randy Orton has been getting more and more comfortable in his role as the Authority’s golden boy and Daniel Bryan is still being cheered for his underdog status. In Cena’s time away, Orton had become complacent being the champion, believing that he truly is the face of the WWE and that the Authority would always have his back. Failure only hurts that much more when there was once reason to believe, which is exactly what Cena has been doing to Randy Orton – letting him believe he is the top star in WWE even though it can and will all be taken away in the blink of an eye.

When Cena confronted Orton at the end of Survivor Series, he was solely focused on Orton. He didn’t look at the crowd, the other wrestlers, or anyone in the Authority. He was locked in on Orton from the moment he made his way to the ring because his plans are finally coming to fruition.

Daniel Bryan is still popular and because no one suspects Cena is behind this, he can still piggyback off Bryan’s popularity (much in the way he did at the end of Raw this week). Randy Orton is still the WWE Champion but is steadily losing support from the Authority. Last week on Raw, Cena gave a mysterious “thumbs down” before putting Orton through a table and this week, absent-mindedly stood with the Authority as they loomed over Orton. 
Triple H, Stephanie McMahon, Kane and John Cena - the new Authority?

This Sunday, at TLC, we’ll see the Authority screw over Randy Orton to let John Cena become the first WWE Unified Champion, keeping Daniel Bryan held down and out of the WWE Title picture as well as destroying his old nemesis at the same time.

To most, a John Cena heel turn will continue to be WWE’s unicorn – something everyone talks about but will never see. But I truly believe that there hasn’t been a better time than now to turn Mr. Hustle, Loyalty and Respect into a bad guy. Orton is on his way out of the Authority’s good graces and the fans have chosen Daniel Bryan as their new favorite which means he will need an equally strong heel to challenge him.

No more Randy Orton, Daniel Bryan back in the WWE Title picture and John Cena getting legitimate boos? That all sounds “best for business” to me.

(Jericho image from, Orton punt gif from


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An avid gamer and long-time pro wrestling fan, stay tuned to Grizzly Gaming and the Delco Elbow Drop for game reviews and pro wrestling news.

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