WWE Raw is hurting for babyfaces without John Cena, but they don't have the heels to help them establish the new babyfaces
Tuesday, AUGUST 26 - 1:23 P.M.
John Cena's neck injury puts the WWE Raw brand in a tough spot. He was their top babyface wrestler and the centerpiece of the brand. They no longer have Triple H or Jeff Hardy to fall back on since they moved to Smackdown via the draft.
Batista is popular, but he hasn't proven to be a mega-star like Cena. C.M. Punk is a babyface champion, but the company has been reluctant to give him a genuine main event push. Rey Mysterio was given Cena's spot in the Championship Scramble, but he's had injury issues of his own in recent years and is saddled with a silly storyline with Kane.
Shawn Michaels is the old standby. When the company gets in trouble and needs a babyface to fill the top role, they generally call on him to fill the void. However, he's currently locked into a feud with Chris Jericho. It would be a shame if WWE decided to pull the plug on this storyline because they felt the need to shuffle the deck on Raw, but I could see it happening.
It takes a good heel to get a babyface over. Unfortunately, that's also an area of weakness on the Raw side. With Randy Orton sidelined, the company is left with Kane, Jericho, and JBL as the top heels. Maybe they could take that silly shirt off William Regal and revisit that push they were giving him before he picked up strike two. Hey, they're pushing Jeff Hardy with two strikes, so why not Regal?
Of course, Regal probably isn't going to rise above the ranks of JBL and Kane. He's an upper-mid-card heel. Raw desperately needs main event level heels and Chris Jericho is the only healthy heel who fits that description.
They could split up the duo of Cody Rhodes and Ted DiBiase, but it will take some time to establish them as legitimate main eventers, especially after Cena just beat them in a damn handicap match last week.
That reminds me, WWE really put themselves in this position. They could have gotten more out of Cena while he was healthy by having him put the right people over. Sure, he put over Orton at WrestleMania, JBL in that silly street fight, and Batista last month. The problem is that Orton and Batista were already main eventers, and JBL's won simply so he could set up his next loss to Cena.
The guys who really need it like Punk, Rhodes, and DiBiase either didn't work with Cena or lost to him in a momentum crushing handicap match.
Raw creative's options are limited. They could stick with the status quo and try to work with what they have. They could bring someone in from ECW or the equally injury depleted Smackdown roster, or they can look to Florida Championship Wrestling or outside the company. Tomko anyone?
Or they could turn one of their top babyfaces heel. If they're not sold on Punk as a babyface champion and have no plans to make him a legitimate champion, then this would be a great time to turn him heel. They need to get as much as they can out of Punk one way or another, and they've done nothing to convince me that they're going to give him a mega-push as a babyface champion, so the heel turn would be intriguing. He'd get a chance to work with fresh opponents, and they'd be bigger draws than JBL and Kane.
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