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The View from Down Under: Can Bray Wyatt Survive The John Cena Curse?

This is not meant to be another opinion ‘bashing’ John Cena (although it may seem that way), as I am a big fan of what John Cena does for charities such as Make-A-Wish, his promotional work for the WWE, and the way he inspires our kids, giving them a good, clean role model to believe in. But I also understand that within the WWE there are certain superstars who have earned the right to have a big say in the outcome of their matches. If The Undertaker really didn’t want to lose to Brock Lesnar, I do not think he would have, if Triple H really wanted to be the WWE World Heavyweight Champion he would be, if John Cena really wanted to put Bray Wyatt over at Wrestlemania & Payback he could have.


For Bray Wyatt, the loss and near end of the feud now means he is the critical phase of the curse of John Cena, a situation only a limited amount of superstars have survived. CM Punk, Daniel Bryan, The Rock, and Randy Orton are the rare few he have battled with John Cena and walked away without losing all their momentum they had prior to the battle with John Cena. Others such as Edge and Chris Jericho dropped to upper mid-card for a while, but due to their talent, managed to quickly recover.



The following is a list of superstars whose standing, momentum and main event status all suffered after battling and eventually losing to John Cena. All the superstars were in the up curve of their career, but quickly found themselves on the bottom of the heap.


JBL was the longest running WWE Champion in Smackdown history, and during that time defeated The Undertaker, Kurt Angle and the Big Show. His reign as champion would end at the hands of John Cena at Wrestlemania 21, and would fail to regain his title in the following “I Quit’ match. This would be the last time JBL would feature heavily in the main event picture. Although he has moved onto become (what I feel) is the number 1 announcer, his in-ring career never hit the same heights after the loss to John Cena.



Umaga burst onto the WWE scene after Wrestlemania 22 (after initial stints as Fatu, one half of the team 3 minute warning), and went on an impressive dominating winning streak, beating the likes of Kane and Triple H along the way. Umaga would never be pinned or submit until he face John Cena at the 2007 New Years Revolution PPV in 2007, where Cena defeated the undefeatable via a soft roll up pin. John Cena would then choke Umaga out using the ring ropes at the following Royal Rumble PPV, ending the feud and Umaga’s main event run. Minor runs as Intercontinental Champion would follow, but Umaga would never again be a main event player before his untimely death in December 2004.


The Great Khali was always very limited in the ring, and possibly only ever had a small window of opportunity at the top, however thanks to The Undertaker was made to look like a unstoppable monster when he first arrived in the WWE. In fact The Great Khali would defeat The Undertaker, Kane, and Shawn Michaels before challenging John Cena for the title. After 2 PPV’s against John Cena, The Great Khali who had only ever lost to The Undertaker via a Last Man Standing match would tap out and be pinned by John Cena. After his losses to Cena, The Great Khali never again regained his dominate unstoppable image he had prior to his John Cena Feud and went on to be a comedy act.




Wade Barrett was the leader of the NEXUS in June 2010, and led this group who dominated the WWE. Attacking any and every superstar, this group was feared in the Locker room, and became one of the best stories of 2010. Then they went up against John Cena. This dominate group led by Wade Barrett would go up against John Cena and 6 other superstars at Summer Slam, in a 7-7 elimination tag match, and lose, with team WWE having just one sole survivor…..John Cena who eliminated both the Justin Gabriel and Wade Barrett to win. While they tried to keep up the NEXUS story line, due to John Cena winning at Summer Slam, all momentum was lost by Wade Barrett and his NEXUS, who soon after went separate ways. It is only now 4 year slater that again we are seeing the best of Wade Barrett as he slowly makes his way up to the main event stage again.



The Miz Since debuting in the WWE in 2006, The Miz slowly rose in the ranks of the WWE locker room. Tag Team Champion with John Morrison, then moved onto the second tier titles winning the United States title twice, right up to 2010 where he would win the RAW MITB briefcase, and shock the world by cashing in his briefcase and defeating Randy Orton for the WWE Championship. The Miz would then go on to successfully defend the title against John Morrison, Randy Orton and Jerry ‘The King’ Lawler, and while defeating John Cena at Wrestlemania 28, he would lose the title and his rematch to John Cena in the following 2 PPV’s. From this moment, The Miz has fallen from the pinnacle of the WWE to now participating in preshow PPV matches.


Zach Ryder After riding a wave of popularity thanks to his YouTube show and then winning the United States Championship, Zac Ryder was placed as a weak link in the Kane/John Cena story line and a love triangle situation with John Cena and Eve Torres who was Zac Ryder’s girlfriend. After being beaten up by Kane and losing his girlfriend to John Cena, Zac Ryder has become a go to Jobber for new WWE stars. The John Cena curse occurred this time not due to battling John Cena, but curse by association when the WWE and John Cena moved in and sponged of Zac Ryder’s popularity.




Ryback lost a lot of his momentum after consecutive losses to CM Punk, however he survived due to the fact these losses were caused by outside interference (The Shield, Brad Maddox). After turning heel, Ryback was still heading up the main event rankings when he then was put into a feud against John Cena. A drawn Last Man standing match, followed by loss after loss to John Cena, resulted in in this once dominate figure Ryback, having to start his ascend all over again, beginning with teaming up with Curtis Axel.


Mark Henry career has been filled with highs and lows, thanks to a combination of injuries and terrible story lines (his hand baby with Mae Young). But in 2013 Mark Henry showed just what he is capable of delivering his best promo of his career and then attacking John Cena. This led to a brief feud and match at the 2013 MITB PVV. Where Mark Henry would tap out and lose to John Cena, a weak way to end possibly Mark Henry’s last major Championship feud. Since losing at MITB, Mark Henry again lost his dominating aura, and was used to put over Brock Lesnar.


Alberto Del Rio (ADR) – After spending nearly 2-3 years at the top end of the main event roster, ADR would face a returning John Cena to defend his World Heavyweight Championship at the 2013 Hell in a Cell PPV, where ADR would lose. He would fail to win the title back at the following Survivor Series PPV. Since losing the title to John Cena, ADR has fallen to battling and losing to the likes of Sin Cara.



Damien Sandow was heading towards the main event level of the WWE roster, after an impressive debut, building towards winning the 2013 MITB. He would challenge an injured John Cena for the World Heavyweight Championship the following night after Cena won it at Hell in The Cell. In arguably Damien Sandow’s best in ring performance, he would fail to win the championship, becoming only the second man to fail to successfully cash-in the MITB contract. Since that match with John Cena, Damien Sandow very quickly dropped down WWE pecking order to where he now comes to the ring dressed as magneto to get beaten up by Hugh Jackman (Wolverine)




Bray Wyatt debuted and would cleanly defeat the likes of Kane and Daniel Bryan in his first two major feuds, before starting his story with John Cena. Losses to John Cena at Wrestlemania and Payback, was only interrupted by a tainted win in a Cage match at Extreme Rules. Another promising superstar whose aura has been lost due to John Cena.



If we look at the list of wrestlers from above, most of John Cena’s early victories have been made to look impressive as the likes of JBL, The Great Khali, Batista, Mark Henry and all had battles against The Undertaker, who made each of these wrestlers look strong. Even if The Undertaker walked away at the end of the feud victorious it was only after several defeats to these superstars. If you want to look at the difference in why The Undertaker is respected by fans and John Cena is not, then compare the John Cena burial list from above to a list of wrestlers The Undertaker has put over, and you can see why if you are over 10 years old, and have knowledge of the WWE and the Wrestling world, why John Cena is constantly disliked by professional wrestling fans.


We now have Bray Wyatt in a precarious position, after months of building this man and stable up to be a dominate force in the WWE, Bray Wyatt has to now face the WWE Universe and explain why he didn’t get the job down. This was hinted briefly on Smackdown this week, but we remain unsure as to whether he has suffered The John Cena Curse!!!





Hooroo and see you next week.


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  • UrbanHermit

    You forgot to include Ziggler.

  • Hardcore Hornet

    Umaga was Jamal in 3 Minute Warning not Fatu!