After years upon years of being the undisputed face of WWE, John Cena has stepped aside in recent years to pursue opportunities in film and TV. In fact, his match with The Fiend at WrestleMania 36 will mark his first bout in close to 15 months.
Attempts to replace Cena as the undoubted top star of the promotion have been challenging, to say the least, and Cena believes this is an issue.
Speaking on After the Bell, Cena weighed both the positives and negatives of WWE being headed up by a collective at the top of its cards, as opposed to a singular draw, saying, "SmackDown, Raw, NXT, you don't have one person you go to see. If you go to a show, you go to see eight or nine people. I don't think there's ever been more potential under one roof than right now.
"The Attitude Era was the era of universal popularity. The opening match had a definable storyline into the main event and everyone in-between had some sort of narrative. Now, we have a few loosely crafted narratives and some big storylines and a lot of matches for the sake of action. But I also believe that's on the performers to make something out of that.
"The best scenario, when they tell you, 'I don't know what we want tonight.' That's when the rap guy was born, that's when the US Title challenge was born. When they don't know what they want, they're giving you the freedom to create. And when they strictly tell you, you still have freedom, but it's defined in what they give you. It takes being brave and doing stupid things and hoping they get over and maybe you can wear wristbands when you're 43 and have it seem comfortable. I do think there's never been more athletic talent under one roof than right now."
(Credit to Fightful for transcription)