John Cena, for the better part of the decade, has been the face of the company. He is the self-proclaimed “Face that runs the place”, has reached a point where that is not just self-proclaimed but also a universally acknowledged fact by the WWE Universe.
His engagements outside of the WWE have been testament to the brand that John Cena has established over the years in the company. His strong work ethic, the ability to put on great matches on Pay-Per-Views and his connection with the crowd has made him the biggest superstar of the current generation without doubt.
His drawing power has never been in question, no matter how polarized the fan base is when it comes to John Cena. While he shows up on Smackdown Live sporadically and has had 2 pay-per-view appearances, he has largely been missing in action as he has a myriad of other engagements apart from WWE.
As WWE moves towards a new era of wrestling, it is only fair to assume that someone will be stepping up to claim John Cena’s position at the top of the mountain. Here are 5 Superstars that can replace Cena.
5. Seth Rollins
The Architect of The Shield has been a constant joy to watch in the ring and on the mic for a while now. He debuted in WWE as part of the newly re-branded NXT back in 2010. He made his made main roster debut as part of The Shield alongside Dean Ambrose and Roman Reigns at Survivor Series,2012.
The Shield was one of the hottest stables in WWE and the dubbed “Architect” instantly became a hit with the fans solely based on what he could do in the ring. He had the power to toss people in turnbuckles, the agility to flip off of anything onto anyone. He has the power, speed and agility and impeccable skill on the mic. He is the most complete professional wrestler of the modern-day era and could easily become the face of the company in a few years’ time.
He is a 2 time WWE Champion already and a 1-time Tag Team Champion with Roman Reigns and 1-time US Champion, so things might be looking good for Seth Rollins.
4. Roman Reigns
Say whatever you will about the “Big Dog”, Roman Reigns has improved drastically in the ring. He cannot put up a bad match even if he tried. His rivalry with AJ Styles produced 2 of the best matches of the year and a sure-shot contender for Match of the Year 2016. His performance in Survivor Series this year was a highlight for the show.
Roman Reigns is the complete prototype for WWE. He has the look, the in-ring ability and slowly improving mic skills to cement himself as the face of the company and take over John Cena.
His ferocity in the ring matched with his size and speed give him the legitimacy of an actual powerhouse that can lay the hurt on anyone who dares cross him.
3. Finn Balor
Finn Balor was a superstar before he set food inside a WWE arena. He came into NXT with all the hype in the world surrounding, and boy, did he deliver. Balor has one of the most interesting gimmicks of the modern era. He brings out the “Demon King” persona on special occassions. The Demon King personna is one of the most entertaining characters right now and brings out a more intense, aggressive side of him.
Balor is currently out of action due to a shoulder injury he suffered at Summerslam right after winning the WWE Universal Championship, to become the first holder of that title. He is expected to return just in time for Wrestlemania.
He cemented himself as the top babyface on RAW after just a couple of matches, and the WWE are aware of that. He has the skills and the look and the mic skills to replace John Cena in the coming years.
2. AJ Styles
Some would argue that AJ Styles has already replaced Cena at the top of the totem, as he defeated John Cena clean to declare himself the new “Face that runs the place” and the “Champ that runs the camp”. AJ Styles has only been in the WWE for about a year but he was a bonafide legend before he stepped foot in a WWE ring. The ovation the WWE Universe gave him when he debuted in the Royal Rumble 2016 is evidence to the fact.
AJ Styles is 39 years old but he hasn’t shown any sings of slowing down. He has been named the Best Wrestler in the World a number of times by Pro-Wrestling Illustrated (a highly prestigious wrestling magazine) and has been a major draw for any promotion he works for.
He is dubbed “The Phenomenal One” and rightfully so. He is the modern day Shawn Michaels. He is undoubtedly the best in-ring worker in the world right now, and has shown to be a captivating presence on the microphone as well. This makes him the complete package and well on his way to become the face of the company.
1. Kevin Owens
Kevin Owens is, hands down, the most entertaining the bad guy to watch in WWE. He is sarcastic, loudmouthed and brash as it gets. His character work is impeccable and even though he is a bad, bad man, he is still well liked by WWE fans all around the world.
He made his name in the independent circuit before coming to WWE and already had a lot of buzz surrounding him. He looks almost pudgy and overweight at first glance but once you see him perform unbelievable moves in the ring, you come to realize, that’s just his character. He has unbelievable in-ring skills and even greater mic skills which makes him the most entertaining guy on RAW. He is the current WWE Universal Champion.
His top bad guy status might change eventually as he is too well liked to remain a bad guy for the rest for his career, one can see him become the next John Cena with the proper push.
Also, he powerpombed Machine Gun Kelly off of a stage.