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January 29, 2008

WrestleMania main event coming into focus

After watching Raw last night, it isn’t crystal clear what the WrestleMania XXIV main event will be, but we can be fairly certain what it won’t be – Randy Orton vs. John Cena.

Although Cena won the Royal Rumble match on Sunday to earn a shot at Orton’s WWE title at WrestleMania, it was announced on Raw that Orton instead will defend the title against Cena at the No Way Out pay-per-view on Feb. 17. As expected, it also was announced that there will be an Elimination Chamber match at No Way Out, with the winner challenging the WWE champion – either Orton or Cena – at WrestleMania.

Although WWE was anything but predictable at the Royal Rumble pay-per-view, I have to think it’s highly unlikely that anyone other than Triple H will win the Elimination Chamber match. The other competitors are Umaga, Shawn Michaels, Jeff Hardy, Chris Jericho and JBL.

Assuming that Triple H does win that match, there would be three possible scenarios for WrestleMania: Triple H vs. Cena, Triple H vs. Orton or a triple-threat match.

The most likely matchup might be Triple H-Cena. It was the WrestleMania event two years ago, and it was scheduled to be the main event again last year before Triple H was injured and his spot was taken by Michaels. As far as the WWE pecking order goes, Cena and Triple H clearly are the company’s two biggest superstars.

Ever since the No Mercy pay-per-view in October, however, it seemed that WWE was building to a Triple H-Orton match at WrestleMania. Ironically, that was scheduled to be the WrestleMania main event in 2005, but the audience forced a booking change because it got behind Batista and WWE responded by putting him in Orton’s spot.

Since winning the title in October, Orton has been put over strong, and that push would seem like a waste of time if he doesn’t go to WrestleMania with the belt around his waist. I could envision a scenario in which Orton somehow escapes with the title at No Way Out, and Cena faces someone else at WrestleMania before going after the title – which presumably will be held by Triple H at this point – after WrestleMania.

The idea I like best is the triple-threat match. If there was a controversial ending in the Orton-Cena match at No Way Out, it would be logical to have them both go to the WrestleMania main event against Triple H. All three wrestlers have story line issues with one another, and it would be a fresh matchup in a sense since we already have seen singles matches between them but never a three-way.

It will be interesting to see how this all plays out.

Other thoughts on last night’s Raw:

Cena’s emotional promo was a strong way to open the show. Cena has the type of charismatic personality that moves fans to really love him or really love to hate him, which makes for an electric atmosphere. The verbal back-and-forth between Cena and Orton was very good. …

The tag-team main event in which Orton and JBL defeated Jericho and Hardy was solid. Cena’s run-in at the end was predictable, but I thought it was a nice touch that JBL bailed on Orton after promising that he would have his back. After all, there’s no honor among thieves. …

On the Nov. 5 episode of Raw, Vince McMahon put DX back together for what he said was “one night only.” However, Triple H and Michaels also reunited last month on the Raw 15th anniversary show and again last night. Three nights only? I enjoy DX so I’m not complaining, just pointing it out. Actually, with Triple H’s heel turn likely in the near future, this could be the last time we see DX for a while. …

I’m not sure where WWE is going with the Mickie James story line, but I am intrigued. I hope she isn’t turning heel, because James comes across as the most likable of all the women wrestlers in WWE. …

Cody Rhodes’ awkward-looking arm-drag on Carlito made my arm hurt. …

Santino Marella had the line of the night. I don’t think I am allowed to repeat it on a family Web site, but it had something to do with Maria, a monument and Jim Ross’ pants. …

Just wondering: Is William Regal going with that ridiculous-looking mop-top look because he is going to lose a hair match somewhere down the line?

Posted by Kevin Eck at 2:48 AM | | Comments (23)


Santino Marella cracks me up everytime he takes the mic. I would also love to see a triple threat match btween Cena, Orton and Triple Haitch @ mania

i should say that the main event will be Ortan vs HHH and Cena Vs Edge it will be interesting to watch them at Wrestlemania 24.after beating Hardy, We can say that Ortan have ability to win the title match against Cena at NO WAY will also be interesting to watch The Undertaker against HBK at Wrestlemania 24.We will be waiting for NO WAY OUT results.

If they are going to go with HHH vs Cena, they need to turn one of them Heel, hopefully Cena since I hate him.

DX was also re-united at the Iraq show.

Cena also FUed McMahon at that show. Perhaps we should have saw that as a sign that he was healing fast.

Who do you think Batista's Wrestle Mania opponent will be?

RESPONSE FROM KEVIN ECK: You're absolutely right -- I forgot about DX at Tribute for the Troops, and, yes, Cena did look pretty healthy at that show. As for Batista, I don't have a strong feeling. Maybe Orton or Cena if one of them isn't in the Raw main event.


randy orten stinks jhon cena will definitly win his wwe title back and jeff hardy will win the illimination chamber and jhon cena & jeff hardy will hurt orton bad

i think their should be a fatal four way for the wwe champ between ortan cena hardy and hhh

Hey Kevin, I was at RAW on monday and had a great time. It's a little ridiculous how split the crowds are for Cena. I have a couple questions for you... 1) do you think that if Orton loses the title that he will be the one who does a program with flair going in to mania? 2) what do you think the wwe is saying about smackdown by having the rumble winner be from RAW and then having the elimination chamber be for the wwe championship? i think the chamber would have been better if they were able to mix in batista and taker, more legit contenders 3) I feel like I've noticed a lot more botched spots and messed up lines the past two nights than I have in a while. That one is not a question, its more of an observation.

You cannot underestimate John Cena. The reports said he was healing fast and the FU on vince in iraq kinda showed that he can win even with one arm thats how good he really is. I was hoping he would fight Edge @ WM 24 because i'm getting tired of edge, his "lover" and his two followers on SD and i'm hoping someone will give that title some respect again. Edge is not a champion because in all the title matches he has won, he's only won ONE match fairly and that was a steel cage match. The only good thing about Orton right now is his music, because I don't know about everyone else but when I hear it, it makes me very angry at him thats perfect for a heel like him. I think that maybe the chamber match @ No Way Out could bring about another hhh/hbk storyline.

i'm a member of chaingang assault battalion... i wanna wish JC best of luck for all his forthcoming matches...

Im glad his back

I agree that I would prefer the triple threat scenario at Mania 24. The unfinished business between the 3 seems ideal for that. If anyone does win at No Way Out- I would like to see Orton do so. Keeping him strong up to Mania would really make the title change there have much more credibility, rather than handing it straight back to Cena at No Way Out.

Elimination Chamber seems set for a Triple H victory, let's hope Hardy goes on to win the Money In The Bank Ladder match so he can have another title shot and a deserved title run.

I like the idea of Mr Kennedy against the Nature Boy. The build up to Ric Flairs match with MVP wasn't great, and neither was the match, particularly the finish. Kennedy for me is the most entertaining wrestler on the mic(although marella comes close) and think he will make this more believable and get the fans much more behind this Flair retirement angle. I do hope to see Kennedy as a face later this year though.

What about Jeff Hardy, Hes not out of the picture, my thoughts, If hardy loses the Raw elimination chamber match, he will come in 2nd againest Triple H, and if he does lose, he will win Money in the Bank at wrestlemania and will become champion on raw sometime before the end of 08.
Also, Taker wins the Smackdown Elimantion chamber, in 2nd is batistia.

I was at RAW, and it was a great show. Im mad that Orton will be dropping the title though, he's the best champ next to Edge.

I have this feeling that Cena is not going to be winning the WWE title back at No way out or WM24. He apeared in the UK on SkySports saying he has a movie roll coming up. So it may just be that hes getting fitness back and then will leave the company while filming: Round 12 (release date: 5 September 2008 (USA)). So if he doesnt leave after No Way Out for Filming, it will be after Wrestlemania 24. So looks like HHH v Orton WM24.

What no body seems to remember is that fans started to boo John Cena before he got injured, not because he was a heel (because he wasn't), and not because people "loved to hate him", but because of very bad management decisions on the part of the creative team. People were so sick and tired of the same thing, John Cena, "Da Champ". He may have gotten his butt kicked a few times during live Raw shows, before the PPVs, but some how, he would always come out on top when the PPVs came arounds. "John Cena VS. Umaga" for the championship, OK, UMAGA, the guy who put Kane out for a little, the "Somoan Bull whatever", undefeted streak ended when he faced the guy who was beat by Carlito when fighting for the US championship, John Cena. The fact of the matter is, people were so sick and tired of having John Cena shoved down their throats. Don't get me wrong, when John Cena was new, I couldn't wait to see him fight his way through the ranks, but that didn't happen. In part, it didn't happen because of his "success" in "The Marine", since he had to replace who they originally had lined up for the part, Stone Cold Steve Austin. To be quite honest, I was mad when John Cena won the Royal Rumble, not because I am a "hater" as ignorant people like to put it, but because he did not deserve that, much like Chris Jericho did not deserve to be in the title picture when he came back after 2 years. I wish they wouldn't be screwing John Cena's character up like this, he is no Super Hero, so stop the cartoon stuff.. If the WWE knows what is good for business, they should have John Cena without the title for AT LEAST 6 months to a year. And not have him always fighting for it, but wanting. I would hate to see WWE fall like WCW for not pushing younger talent, and shoving one man down our throats (in WCW it was either Goldberg, or Hulk Hogan). Jeff Hardy has more than paid his dues, and fans back him a great deal. I believe he is the best person to win at Wrestle Mania, or atleast fight for the title, but I honestly do not believe that either Randy or John should be in the match. Triple H is one of my all time favorites, even when he is a heel, but if you notice, he is mainly there to help the career of the younger talents now, he may hold the title one more time in the future, but it is not very likely that it will be within the next 6 months. We have had a heel champion long enough, so it is very unlikely that either JBL or Umaga will go on to WM24. And Chris Jericho will not get it, simply because of the fact that he is now back after 2 years of being gone, and I don't think that fans that read into it, such as myself and millions of others, will like another undeserving champion. They are just trying to make sure that the fans know that Chris Jericho is a "big dog"..... which they don't have enough of. Anyway, if you read this, thank you for giving me your time, if you didn't, you won't read this part anyway.

Wow that last comment was intense Jericho could nay should hold the title but as the great whiny heel he once was. I believe Regal should lose a haor match it would top off the long list of embarrassing things he has done in this company starting with kissing Vince's butt. Why not push him as a legitimate main event.

And Kevin just saw Shark Boy for the first time - WORST GIMMICK EVER!

Am I the only one who doesn't want to see Triple H headlining Wrestlemania again?

The women's division is kind of lacking in the WWE. I mean, even when Candice Michelle comes back, can us fans really believe she can beat Beth Phoenix? Phoenix appears more powerful than Awesome Kong...I say we book Phoenix vs Orton for Wrestlemania 21. Wrestlemania is all about booking some intense matches, I'd pay to see this!

cena is the best .why do u hate him he s my hero.he suould b the wwechamp 4 at lest 1234 days.

The triple threat match will sell better than any other match and HHH should walk away the champ.

Guys, how about HBK ending the Undertaker winning with a draw @WM24

Batista should win the Money in the bank ladder match and then move to RAW.

Randy Orton stinks. Ithink he must practice making his "scarey" faces in the mirror- he looks like a mime- Cena is, was, and always will be the champ- with or without his title. Im confident that when monday night raw starts I will here his music and see Cena stroll out, head held high - win or loose- that makes him a great champion. Of course I want him to win his title back- he has payed his dues- he never LOST his title to begin with. Orton was a champion of convienence not victory- and everyone should remember that.

I wish rey mysterio was in wrestlemania 24. I hope cena beats orton in the wwe championship.

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About Kevin Eck
The Baltimore Sun's Kevin Eck blogs about professional wrestling.
E-mail Kevin.

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