As the title claims, Braun Strowman is at a pivotal point of his career and the fans feel the same way. While some will say Samoa Joe should’ve won the Fatal Four-way at Summerslam, crowd reactions tell us otherwise. WWE built up the anticipation between Strowman and Lesnar very well leading in to the event. When they were finally let go, the roof was blown off with the excitement. No one expected him to destroy Lesnar to the point he’d be carried off on a stretcher.
Brock has been billed as The Beast for a long time, and while he and WWE has managed to keep him looking the part .. standing next to Strowman, it’s not the same. WWE cannot have Brock go over the way he’s gone over The Undertaker, The Big Show, Mark Henry, or any other big wrestler in the past. In other words, if Lesnar is going to beat Strowman at No Mercy it has to be due to some kind of outside interference. There is no way Lesnar should be able to beat him clean.
And that’s where the dilemma comes in. Lesnar is still capable of portraying The Beast. He is willing to stay in WWE to be the Universal Champion and get paid considerably for a part-time job. But can he do it forever? No. Strowman can’t do it forever either .. but at least he’s seven years younger. At least he’s full-time and capable of bringing the title back to Raw on a full-time basis. Strowman and the Universal title would complement each other, unlike with Lesnar where it feels a bit (but not completely) wasted. The Beast does not need the title to be taken seriously in any feud. The Beast does not need the title to be a major draw for WWE.
But what’s most important about pushing Strowman at this time is he’s done everything possible to get over with the fans. Credit should be given to Roman Reigns for selling and making him look like the “Monster Among Men”, but there’s no denying Strowman has improved exponentially over the past year. His rise has been organic, he keeps asking for competition, and the fans like his attitude. And the scary thing is he hasn’t peaked yet .. he could improve even more so.
Another big reason behind Strowman needing this push is because the fans actually like him. Despite his recent success, it has not been met with the same resistance to John Cena or Roman Reigns. The fans feel he is deserving .. he looks the part, he plays the part, and he doesn’t suck in the ring like he did when he debuted two years ago. When he got his initial push as part of The Wyatt Family he wasn’t ready. He deserved the “boring” chants as he was too slow .. and wasn’t the monster he is today. WWE separated him from The Wyatts and pushed the reset button after drafting him to Raw.
Strowman is working as a tweener (face & heel at same time), but we don’t hear many jeers. I believe only Roman Reigns’ loyal fans don’t like Strowman, but they are not overly vocal about it either. Braun was originally billed as the bad guy against Reigns .. but honestly, he ended up being a figure of admiration as he beat him up like no one before. Strowman was doing to Roman what many who don’t support him could only dream of doing themselves. Suddenly it felt like Super Reigns wasn’t so invincible anymore.
The “I’m not finished with you” line is a quote which will be remembered for years to come. The unrelenting nature of the Monster Among Men resonates with the bloodthirsty side of the audience. They can’t get enough of Strowman beating up on Roman .. and now he’s turned his attention to Lesnar. The potential for epic battles continues. Can Lesnar stop Strowman? That’s the question here. For the sake of WWE, now is the time to show that the past is in the past, and the future has arrived. Strowman needs to be the new beast .. the new champion. The guy who sets the bar, and never stops wrecking the competition despite holding the top prize.
And while they’re at it .. they need to refresh Paul Heyman. He’s a business man, and someone who publicly admits money is his biggest motivator. He’s smart enough to see the writing on the wall, and it wouldn’t be the first time Heyman’s turned on The Beast. It wouldn’t be the first time Heyman’s felt he was no longer “The Next Big Thing”. What if Heyman decided Brock was no longer “The Conqueror”? What if Heyman looks at Strowman and sees what he saw in Lesnar back in 2002? What if Strowman is this generations Next Big Thing? Would he do what’s best for him? Or does Lesnar still need his services? I’d personally like to see Heyman using his skills to put someone over who could really benefit.
What do you think? Is Strowman ready? Does Lesnar need the title to sell tickets? Will Strowman’s image be damaged if he can’t beat The Beast at No Mercy? Should Heyman abandon his long-time client for the newer, faster, stronger model? Will Strowman be the man to take us in to a new age? Can he be as big of a star as those who came before? And more importantly .. do you think Strowman can draw big numbers? Would the casual fan pay to see him defend the title?
That’s what I want to know, and what I look forward to finding out. And it’s something I hope becomes reality so WWE can move in to the future with legends being made, while the old draws wind down and ride off in to the sunset. It’s what life is all about. Change has to happen, and more change is coming in WWE. Even if Strowman doesn’t win at No Mercy, he’s been chosen as the next big thing .. so expect the unexpected, and embrace the next generation of talent in wrestling’s biggest promotion. As always, thanks for reading!