The world was buzzing when John Cena popped the question to Nikki Bella. There were rumors before the Miz and Maryse feud was announced that John Cena would be facing The Undertaker at WrestleMania 33. But those plans obviously changed and there was a reason behind it.
We are all probably wrestling fans, but right now you have to take yourself out of that equation in order to understand a portion of this. “John Cena and Nikki Bella” was the #2 Google search of Sunday night according to The Observer. John and Nikki’s engagement even got more people searching for it than WWE itself.
This was huge news. John Cena and Nikki Bella appeared on The Today Show to talk about their engagement. That doesn’t happen unless you’re a big deal. John Cena is now a much bigger celebrity than just a WWE superstar. He co-hosts The Today Show on a pretty regular basis and his hosting endeavors on Saturday Night Live, The ESPYS, and Nick’s Kids’ Choice Awards mean his exposure is huge. He’s also got several movies in the works. He’s the kind of guy housewives are interested in because he’s smart, attractive, and funny — and it has nothing to do with pro wrestling.
While on The Today Show, John and Nikki claim only one other person knew about the engagement and it was a total surprise. But, we’ve been talking about the upcoming engagement since the program with Miz and Maryse was announced so we don’t know what they’re talking about. Maybe John meant he only officially “told” one other person about it.
The fact that John and Nikki’s moms were at ringside looking happy as can be is another indication things were planned way in advance. If you couple in the fact much of Miz and Maryse’s program with John and Nikki revolved around the fact that John and Nikki aren’t married. But, the engagement still drew big numbers. It got amazing exposure, and it will undoubtedly result in a Total Divas or Total Bellas rating bonanza.
Another reason John Cena didn’t end up facing The Undertaker at WrestleMania is Cena didn’t need to. John Cena is a part-timer for a lack of a better term and didn’t need a win over The Dead Man to establish himself. Roman Reigns needed this win. Even though it doesn’t look good for him now, Roman will use this victory to solidify himself as a big deal. He is a full-time entertainer and a big part of WWE’s future.
So, the Cena/Taker match at WrestleMania was scrapped for a couple of reasons. They still got amazing numbers and reached a wider audience with the engagement angle with John and Nikki. People care about their engagement way beyond the traditional WWE Universe. Also, Roman Reigns will use the fact he retired The Undertaker to launch himself even deeper into the main event.
John Cena and Nikki’s engagement with Roman Reigns winning over Taker at Mania is a win/win for WWE. They get the mainstream attention and the win gives a future superstar another notch in his belt. Whether you would have rather seen Cena in the main event, everything Roman does from this point on will feel like it means more because he left The Undertaker looking at the lights at WrestleMania 33.