When John Cena returns to WWE television next month, he'll be doing so with a storyline that he's a "free agent."
A video hyping Cena's return on the July 4th episode of SmackDown aired during Raw last night, with it saying that "Free agent John Cena returns to SmackDown Live." It had been revealed previously that he would be returning on that date, though nothing about him being a free agent was mentioned then.
What that actually means quickly became a question. And people naturally wondered if it was related to the announcement that Roman Reigns will be making on Raw next week about his plans for SummerSlam.
Dave Meltzer and Bryan Alvarez briefly discussed the matter on last night's edition of Wrestling Observer Radio, and Meltzer noted that he was told that Cena won't be Reigns' opponent at SummerSlam. The idea is apparently for Cena to be able to appear on both Raw and SmackDown even if it goes against the brand split because he's one of the only draws that WWE has.
Cena has been absent from WWE TV since WrestleMania 33 due to taking time off to work on film projects. The July 4th episode of SmackDown that he's returning on will take place at the Talking Stick Resort Arena in Phoenix, Arizona.