Should Cena step up...or step down?

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August 29, 2007

Randy Orton may have figured out something on Raw Monday night: If you can't get the attention of WWE Champion John Cena, target that which he holds closest to him. In this case, Cena's father, whom Orton literally pulled out of his seat and over the ringside barricade, then punted directly in the skull…all while The Champ was forced to watch, dazed and helpless.

Monday night in Boston's TD Banknorth Garden was supposed to be a post-SummerSlam homecoming for Cena, a chance to celebrate his successful WWE Title defense over Randy Orton. Now, it is a constant reminder of the Legend Killer's despicable assault…and perhaps the lynchpin that will prompt Cena to make some tough, even irrevocable decisions in the days ahead.

CAT scans taken on Cena's father reveal that he suffered a grade III concussion, but thankfully no brain damage, as had originally been feared. Mr. Cena's concussion and badly cut left eye will eventually heal…but what kind of irreparable damage has Orton's actions done to The Champ? Place yourself in Cena's boots for a moment: How would you handle being forced to watch as the man who raised you, loved you since infancy, was brutally beaten, then left in a crumpled heap?

WWE.com can't answer these questions, especially since our attempts to contact Cena have so far proven unsuccessful. However, suggesting that this ordeal won't have any affect on him would be irresponsible on our part.

Many of our fans are understandably inclined toward retribution, like Shawna G. of Roxbury. "If anybody hurt someone in my family, they'd damn sure regret it," she said. "Maybe Cena should go after Orton's dad…you know, eye for an eye."

That's an interesting idea; though WWE Hall of Famer Cowboy Bob Orton is long retired from ring action, he wouldn't be so unsuspecting a victim as Cena's father was. It would also make the younger Orton -- or any other Superstar in the locker room -- think twice before taking their problems with The Champ to the most personal of levels.

Not everyone has revenge on their mind, however. "John Cena's got to be feeling pretty bad about what happened," noted Boston native James Aston, who'd been sitting only five rows away when he watched Orton attack The Champ's father. "If I were in his shoes, it would eat me up inside to know that I couldn't do anything to stop one of my loved ones being attacked like that. Personally, after something like that, I'm not sure that I'd even want to be champion anymore. Randy Orton just demonstrated that no one's untouchable; if they can't get to you directly, they'll do it some other way. No championship is worth that."

Talk about your more interesting observations. It sounds insane to vocally insinuate that The Champ would consider forfeiting the gold he has worn proudly for nearly a year, much less walk away from the ring when he's in his prime. Then again, guilt can do strange things to a man…even when that man is John Cena.

Vote now: What should John Cena do next?

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