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Cena forced to vacate title; New champion to be crowned this Sunday
By SLAM! Staff


John Cena in May 2007.
Photo by Mike Mastrandrea

John Cena has suffered a complete tear of his right pectoral tendon and will be out of action six to eight months following surgery.

He will not drop the title in the ring and has been forced to vacate the title immediately. His current reign as champion was the longest since Hulk Hogan's first run in 1984-1988.

WWE has announced a new WWE Champion will be crowned at this Sunday's No Mercy pay-per-view. Randy Orton was scheduled to face Cena for the title at the event, and it is unknown what format will be used to crown a champion. The WWE is only teasing on their website that "There will be a WWE Championship Match this Sunday at No Mercy, and a new WWE Champion will be crowned."

Some early indications point to a possible Orton vs.Triple H match for the title.

An announcement was expected to be made at Tuesday's ECW on Sci-Fi show, but Vince McMahon didn't announce who would be working against Orton.

Cena suffered the injury during his match with Ken Kennedy on last night's WWE RAW. He performed a hip toss on Kennedy and seemed to immediately indicate to the referee that there was a problem. He worked the rest of the match using only his left arm.

He was examined by Dr. James Andrews today, who has performed numerous surgeries on WWE wrestlers, including Triple H, Edge and Gregory Helms. He underwent immediate surgery after the examination indicated a major tear.

WWE physician Dr. Ferdinand Rios told WWE.com that Cena suffered "a complete tear of his pectoralus major muscle." Rios continue to say that Cena will be hospitalized for a few days to learn rehabilitation he will undergo. According to Rios, Cena's arm will be immobilized for a week before he will be allowed to move it.

If the time frame is correct, Cena can be expected to return to the ring around March, or in time for Wrestlemania.

Cena told WWE.com, "No matter how serious the injury, one way or another Iíll be ready to compete on Sunday." Sadly, the seriousness was not known at the time he made that statement, and he not will be able to live up to his words.

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