The duration of his injury won’t necessarily rule out the former WWE champion from wrestling in Hell in a Cell, WWE’s next pay-per-view scheduled on October 28th, but the injury may change the course of the Cena-Punk feud.
Initially, WWE stated that John Cena was going to miss four to six weeks, which would have caused a major change in WWE’s plans. The only reasonable course of action would have been to somehow postpone their feud by inserting someone to take over for Cena.
Notably, Big Show has not appeared on WWE programming for weeks and could have been a possible replacement for Cena. WrestlingInc.com notes that John Laurinaitis has been working dark matches with Big Show.
The two have a history with CM Punk; so, bringing back Laurinaitis for them, with a more comedic and babyface gimmick, may put Punk and Paul Heyman over—at least until Cena recovers. Despite his recent turn to heel, Big Show has a natural ability to play a face. That, in combination with John Laurinaitis' pathetic antagonist role, can be used to postpone the Cena-Punk story possibly until Survivor Series.
Cena will fortunately be able to continue the storyline, but the buildup to next month’s PPV must be executed differently considering Cena’s inability to wrestle.
Their feud will have to rely on the interaction between the two outside of the ring.
This should be no problem given that, arguably, the three best talkers on the roster are in this storyline. Punk and Cena showed last week that even through the horrific event of the Jerry Lawler heart attack, the two can still cut an excellent promo.
If they are able to continue with the tension from the previous week, then WWE might have something better than they had originally planned.
For the past year, matches between WWE legends who wrestle on a part-time basis build up their match with excellent mic skills. But because these wrestlers don’t appear so often, the buildup often dwindles over time before WWE continues the feud. This won’t happen with Punk and Cena since they are on Raw virtually every week. The build up will only increase exponentially over the next few weeks.
Not to mention, Paul Heyman is acting as CM Punk’s manager. There is still a shroud of mystery as to why he has chosen to back up Punk. If WWE needs to pull a trigger on a big angle, Heyman can definitely be the one to do it.
Whether WWE highlights Cena’s injury on television remains to be seen, but expect their presumed main event title match at Hell in a Cell to be even more hyped up than previously anticipated.