Austin Theory successfully defended his United States championship against John Cena at WrestleMania 39 from SoFi Stadium in the opening match of Night 1 of the two-night extravaganza.
Cena entered to a WrestleMania-worthy video package highlighting his Make-a-Wish efforts, before walking on stage surrounded by kids having their wish granted by attending the show.
Theory did everything he could to take Cena off his game, showing desperation time and again by biting Cena’s ear, then biting his hand to get out of an STF. Theory looked to have the advantage and showboated around the ring. Cena nailed the five knuckle shuffle before the referee got knocked down. Cena locked in the STF and earned the submission, but the ref was out, and after he broke the hold, Theory hit Cena with a low blow before hitting the A-Town Down for the win.
Cena’s showdown with Theory made total sense on paper in the build to WrestleMania, with the latter representing the apparent future of WWE facing off against the former top star.
Theory has often spoken about how Cena inspired him as a fan growing up, and the similarities are clear. But the build to their showdown was anything but respectful, with Cena saying Theory has no heart, no soul, the fans don’t believe in him, and he’s boring. Theory got Cena to agree to the match talking about Cena’s phrase to never give up, respect, and putting on a show for the fans.