Top WWE Star Addresses Rumors Of Future Matches Against The Rock, John Cena
By Jason Hall
June 17, 2021
WWE fans have long speculated that Roman Reigns' recent dominance is building up to angles with two of professional wrestling's biggest stars from the past.
During an appearance on ESPN's SportsNation, the current Universal Champion acknowledged rumors of possibly working with both John Cena and Dwayne "The Rock" Johnson, while providing a warning to the two box office stars.
“I get this a lot with Dwayne, and then John Cena as well...If I were these guys, I don’t know if I’d want to come back and deal with me," Reigns said. "I’m a problem right now for everybody. So, if I were them, I would stay on set. I’d keep pumping out these streaming service movies. Don’t come to my ring, is what I would do.”
Reigns has served as WWE's franchise player, a role previously held by Cena for nearly two decades before transitioning to acting. The former Georgia Tech football standout has closed out WrestleMania during five of the last seven years, which included retaining the Universal title by defeating Daniel Bryan and Edge in April.
Reigns spent the majority of his run as a top WWE star playing a protagonist role, but has emerged as SmackDown's top villain since returning to action in August 2020.
Many have speculated that Reigns' dominant run will ultimately build toward a main event WrestleMania match against his real life cousin, Johnson, who he also appeared alongside in the movie Hobbs & Shaw.
Additionally, Spectrum Sports' Jon Alba confirmed previous reports earlier this month that Cena is expected to be Reigns' opponent in the main event of the SummerSlam pay-per-view event on August 21.
WrestleVotes initially reported WWE was working toward a Cena-Reigns match headlining the event if possible.
Alba reports Cena's acting schedule will be cleared in the beginning of July, which will coincide with WWE's return to a live event touring schedule, as well as a potential buildup to the SummerSlam match, though Cena has yet to confirm his participation.
Was going to report this today even though I don't typically dabble into creative stuff, but @WrestleVotes beat me to the punch.— Jon Alba (@JonAlba) June 9, 2021
I can confirm, after speaking with multiple sources, Roman Reigns vs. John Cena is the targeted main event at this moment. #WWE #SummerSlam https://t.co/b13dh9MaEp
Cena missed this year's WrestleMania event in April due to prior obligations and international travel restrictions amid the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic while filming the HBO Max series Peacemaker in Vancouver. The 16-time World Champion had never previously missed WWE's biggest annual event since his debut in 2003.
Cena was credited for always making a demanding WWE schedule prior to transitioning into an acting career. Since then, he's taken a part-time role with the company, still managing to make sporadic appearances, but hasn't appeared on WWE television since WrestleMania 36 in 2020.
The Rock made his last WWE appearance during SmackDown's 20th anniversary episode and wrestled his last match at WrestleMania 32 (2016), appearing in an impromptu match against then-Wyatt Family member Erick Rowan, which escalated into a brawl that saw Cena run out to assist his fellow wrestler-turned-actor.
The two former World Champions headlined WrestleMania 28 (2012) and WrestleMania 29 (2013) against each other and split victories, with Cena taking the latter match.
Johnson also made his WWE return after a several-year absence in the lead-up to WrestleMania 27 (2011) and served as the event's host, which saw him cost Cena the victory in his main event WWE Championship match against The Miz.