On the February 28 episode of Friday Night SmackDown, John Cena will be making his grand return to WWE television, one day after the company’s Super ShowDown pay-per-view in Saudi Arabia. That event is going to feature a Universal Championship match between reigning titleholder “The Fiend” Bray Wyatt and Hall of Famer Bill Goldberg. As rumors are now hinting, either one of these men may be in line for a match at WrestleMania 36 against the 16-time world champion.
On Thursday afternoon, the WrestleVotes Twitter account reported that there is some “smoke” regarding the WrestleMania plans for the three aforementioned superstars, as well as Roman Reigns, who has widely been speculated as Wyatt’s opponent at this year’s edition of the annual event. Given that the matchups may eventually be “tied together,” the tweet went on to say that there are two options reportedly being considered, starting with the rumored Wyatt vs. Reigns match for the Universal title and Cena vs. Goldberg in a battle of part-time legends.
Alternately, WrestleMania 36 may also feature a Reigns vs. Goldberg matchup, pitting two wrestlers who use the spear as a finisher against each other, with Cena facing Wyatt for the Universal Championship and setting a new record by becoming a 17-time world champion.
WWE announces John Cena will return to SmackDown on Feb. 28— B/R Wrestling (@BRWrestling) February 12, 2020
Just in time for Mania ???? pic.twitter.com/sjizWZh0gF
In a separate report, WrestlingNews.co wrote that it is indeed possible Cena will be booked to compete at WrestleMania 36, as he has “publicly expressed interest” in taking part in the “Show of Shows.” Earlier this month, the 42-year-old wrestler-turned-actor said in an interview with Sports Illustrated that he will be at the event “for sure,” pointing out that he currently lives in Tampa, Florida — WrestleMania takes place at Raymond James Stadium in that city — and has told WWE officials that he doesn’t have any commitments lined up around the event weekend.
In addition, an earlier tweet from WrestleVotes suggested that Cena will have “full” creative control at this year’s WrestleMania, thus giving him a good chance of getting booked to wrestle at the event, while having all the leeway he needs to decide what happens in the ring.
As suggested by WrestlingNews.co, availability may play a large part in determining Cena’s WrestleMania 36 opponent. Wyatt — barring any injuries or untoward occurrences — is all but guaranteed to appear at the event due to his full-time status. On the other hand, things are less clear when it comes to Goldberg, who is, for now, only scheduled to compete at Super ShowDown. But with the 53-year-old Hall of Famer’s latest return reportedly helping last week’s Friday Night SmackDown achieve solid ratings, Dave Meltzer of the Wrestling Observer Newsletter speculated that WWE chairman Vince McMahon might just bring him back for the company’s biggest show of the year.