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Article in Today's Baltimore Sun regarding the Shift in the WM 24 Main Event

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?

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