It’s never too soon to look toward the future and speculate how storylines might unfold in the WWE, and now is just one of those times.
Right now, there are clearly two main programs within the company-the Corporate Reign of Terror (or, HHH and Steph on a Power Trip), and the CM Punk/Paul Heyman feud. To a somewhat lesser extent is the Wyatts versus Kane, though with Kane off of TV while filming, that’s sort of simmering on the back burner-though, WWE is doing a decent enough job of making mentions of it on a weekly basis.
Two notable superstars are missing out on the fun. Sheamus went down prior to SummerSlam, and Cena gutted it out through SummerSlam and bowed out on the following RAW. Even with Daniel Bryan’s popularity soaring in WWE over the past few months, it’s not hard to believe that at least one of those two would have been involved in the Corporate angle, either in addition to or instead of Daniel Bryan. Not that I like seeing stars get time off for injuries, but I do believe that things have worked out so much better by making use of a relatively untapped resource that is Daniel Bryan.
So, with the WWE being pretty open about each superstar’s anticipated four to six month recovery timeframe, where does that put them, in terms of a return? If they both were aggressive and had no setbacks, roughly estimating from a mid-August date, the soonest you’d expect a return would be mid-December. The latest, again using the worst case projection, would be mid-February. The logical WWE target? The 2014 Royal Rumble match itself, which would have both men back in about 5 months time. Not impossible, not overly aggressive.
So, assuming they both can come back at the Rumble, should they? It’s become a pretty regular happening, having an injured superstar return as an entrant in the Rumble match. Cena himself is no stranger to that. Given that the company is somewhat thin at the top of the face ranks, behind Bryan and Punk, its not a crazy thought to have them both back at the same time…but what would you have them do, in terms of a program?
One angle that has been debated amongst fans is the likelihood that Cena ends up coming back from injury and is the one to conquer the Corporate cronies. Because of how obvious it is to even the most casual fans, I truly hope this is not the direction being planned for-though, because he was involved somewhat in the corporate emergence right as he went on the shelf, there is also some logic there. However, I’d much rather see John getting involved in something new-perhaps interjecting himself into the Wyatt business, or maybe some new heel that isn’t on the roster at present. There has to be something new and fresh for him, so here’s hoping that WWE writers are thinking somewhat outside of the box.
As for Sheamus, when he returns he really could go in any direction. Do they still bring him back as a face even? I don’t think they have the face depth at this point to consider turning him, but anything is possible. Assuming they do bring him back in a face role still, would they immediately try to get him into a championship chase? It’s not a bad idea, depending on who has which belts at the time of the Rumble.
Of the two, neither really “needs” a championship belt to be over, or more over. But if it were me booking the returns, I would have Cena eliminating someone, perhaps Bray, or someone else, perhaps a Cesaro or Fandango-someone who is capable of more than mid-card status, and have them, in a fit of rage, help someone eliminate Cena. Even a program with Ziggler could be refreshing and valuable to both superstars. If either of them were destined to win the Rumble and get a title shot at ‘Mania, I would opt for Sheamus, especially if Alberto is still WHC at that point.
Of course it is still very early and this is all just speculation to spark the conversations. How and when would you bring these superstars back to regular programming?