Throughout the illustrious history of the WWE, one thing has remained consistent. While the physical championship frequently changes hands, Vince McMahon always has one consistent champion. For most of the 1980’s, it was Hulk Hogan. After Hogan, McMahon tied the fate of the company to the likes of Shawn Michaels, Stone Cold Steve Austin, and John Cena. While these men weren’t champion for the all of their tenure in the WWE, they were the ones that represented the company. These were the main eventers, and no matter what, McMahon always had a spot for his champion.
John Cena will turn 40 shortly after WrestleMania 33, and it’s no secret that he can’t be “the guy” for much longer. His body is starting to break down, and he missed significant time in 2015 as well as the beginning of 2016 thanks to injuries. Cena has always been a polarizing figure, splitting the WWE Universe down the middle, but even his harshest critics have to respect him for his work inside and outside of the ring. Vince McMahon knows that finding someone to fill Cena’s shoes won’t be easy. It won’t be easy, but if Vince McMahon wants to find the next champion, he won’t have to look far.
Seth Rollins is the Future
Even before he joined the company in 2010, Seth Rollins was already among the best in the business. Before signing with WWE, Rollins was best known for his work as Tyler Black with Ring of Honor. Rollins held the Ring of Honor World Championship, the same championship that the likes of Samoa Joe, Daniel Bryan, and CM Punk have held, and he held it for 210 days, the 13th longest reign of all time.
When Rollins signed with WWE, he became “the guy” in developmental. Back when WWE’s developmental terrirtoy was still Florida Championship Wrestling, Rollins and Dean Ambrose were the main eventers. And when Triple H decided to upgrade FCW to NXT, Rollins was the very first NXT Champion. Seth Rollins was called up alongside Dean Ambrose and Roman Reigns, forming The Shield, and as they say, the rest is history.
Rollins has everything Vince McMahon could possibly want in a WWE Champion. He’s got an incredible physique, is a phenomenal athlete, and can get a good match out of any opponent. Since splitting from the Shield, Rollins’ ability on the microphone has drastically improved. While Rollins was a decent speaker before, some of the promos he cut as a heel champion were brilliant. Simply put, Seth Rollins is the total package.
As WWE World Heavyweight Champion, Seth Rollins was the best part of a show that was stagnant. Recently, Rollins has been saying that his knee caved in because he was carrying the entire company. While he’s saying it to garner heat from the crowd, he’s not wrong. Without Rollins, the ratings tanked. The WWE had to completely change the show, signing stars from New Japan Pro Wrestling, and calling up a chunk of the NXT roster.
As champion, Seth Rollins didn’t have AJ Styles or Enzo Amore there boost ratings. Despite being young and athletic, he was stuck with aging superstars like Cena, Sting, and Kane. Seth Rollins was the best part of a very stale show, and he deserves his credit. On a roster that lacks legitimate heels, Rollins might have to wait for his day to be the good guy. But fortunately for Rollins and the WWE, the day is coming. It’s Vince McMahon’s company, and he can keep pushing Roman Reigns if he wants. He can keep pretending that every show doesn’t end in a chorus of boos. But deep down, he knows the truth. As a member of the Shield, Authority, or the Age of the Fall, Seth Rollins is the future of the WWE.