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John Cena is already missed on Raw

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WWE has long had an issue with creating individual stars. John Cena might just be the last major star created by the company who overtook the brand itself. It’s no surprise, then, that his return, which happened right along with the return of fans to live shows, has showcased just how important a star of that magnitude is to a pro wrestling show.

He was missing from Monday Night Raw this week and his absence was noticeable. That’s a testament to how much star power makes a difference. It’s one week! And he just came back after over a year of being away!

And still…

There are wrestlers on Raw who are doing fantastic work, but none of it feels like a big deal. There’s no hype surrounding them. When Cena’s music hits, the crowds lose their mind and it feels like a legitimate happening. His arrival is a show unto itself.

Roman Reigns offers that on SmackDown — where is the star to offer that on Raw?

Here’s the playlist for the show this week:

  • Charlotte Flair gets a one-on-one match with Nikki A.S.H.
  • Damian Priest vs. Sheamus
  • AJ Styles & Omos vs. The Viking Raiders — Raw tag team championship match
  • Drew McIntyre vs. Veer
  • Natalya & Tamina vs. Eva Marie & Doudrop
  • Keith Lee vs. Karrion Kross
  • Mansoor & Mustafa Ali vs. MACE & T-BAR
  • Bobby Lashley vs. Cedric Alexander & Shelton Benjamin
  • Riddle vs. John Morrison
  • Reginald vs. R-Truth — 24/7 championship match
  • Nikki A.S.H. vs. Charlotte Flair
  • Karrion Kross had a fire lit inside him
  • Mustafa Ali credits win with Mansoor to beginner’s luck
  • 24/7 Champion Reginald makes a quick escape