Many fans were majorly surprised to see Roman Reigns vs John Cena announced for Raw’s No Mercy PPV, and for good reason. No Mercy is viewed as a B level PPV, not on the same level as WWE’s big 4 PPV events- Royal Rumble, Survivor Series, SummerSlam and WrestleMania.
We previously reported that the WWE had John Cena vs Samoa Joe and Roman Reigns vs The Miz penciled in for the show, however, they were also discussing going with Cena and Reigns challenging Rollins and Ambrose for the WWE Raw Tag Team Championships.
Going into Monday, our sources have revealed that the WWE had decided to go with the tag team title match over the weekend. They were going to promote a Roman Reigns and John Cena face off for Raw, which would have been interrupted by Gallows and Anderson, who would then lose to Cena and Reigns, leading to Kurt Angle installing Reigns and Cena as the No.1 contenders.
The tentative plan was for Cena and Reigns to win the titles and then drop the titles in the main event of the TLC PPV in October, thus, setting up a Reigns vs Cena main event for Survivor Series, if Cena’s schedule allowed him to work TLC. However, on Monday morning, John Cena dropped a bombshell on the company that changed the plan for THREE PPVs, when he told them that he would be unable to appear whatsoever during the filming of his new Transformers spin-off film, which centres around the franchise’s Bubblebee character.
Cena was already not listed for any Raw shows after No Mercy, however, the WWE were optimistic that Cena would be able to appear at TLC and Survivor Series to compensate for the absence of Brock Lesnar.
Brock Lesnar is NOT set to re-appear for the WWE again after No Mercy, until the build for the Royal Rumble. Cena vs Reigns was intended to be the big program to keep the audience engaged during his absence. The WWE are now stuck with the scenario of having to fast-track the Reigns vs Cena match onto a PPV that already has Brock Lesnar on it.
Our sources claim that John Cena’s neck bump on SmackDown, at the hands of Nakamura, may be partly to blame. It’s being said that Brian Goldner, one of the executive producers for the new Transformers project, is strongly opposed to Cena competing during filming. It’s unknown if Cena’s unavailability is due to the film makers not wanting Cena to appear or whether it is due to a scheduling conflict.
In an additional piece of interesting news, we have been told that Cena vs Reigns was only confirmed at 4pm, just 4 hours before Monday Night Raw. We were also told that John Cena was heavily involved in writing the electric promos that both men so brilliantly delivered on Raw.
After booking Cena vs Reigns, the WWE originally wanted to put Cena vs Samoa Joe on Raw, however, the company decided to go back to the original plan to have the Reigns and Cena face Gallows and Anderson, despite Gallows and Anderson already competing in the battle royal earlier on in the night. This is probably due to the injury suffered by Samoa Joe, that’s being reported by multiple news sites.
The WWE now face the major dilemma of booking both TLC and Survivor Series without John Cena and Brock Lesnar.