If you can read between the lines, it was teased on Raw tonight that Brock Lesnar would hold onto the Universal Championship all the way until WrestleMania 34, wherein he would face Roman Reigns.
The collective WWE Universe let out a shriek, as this would be a massive mistake on all fronts.
Granted, nothing of the sort is official for many different reasons. We all know how plans can change even over the course of a few weeks, let alone an entire year. Plus, who’s to say this isn’t the plan for SummerSlam instead? Then, there’s the potential for injuries or anything else that might rearrange the card even if WWE does indeed want to do this match at WrestleMania in 2018.
It makes no sense, seeing as how they had to put Seth Rollins cashing in the Money in the Bank to save that match the first time it happened at WrestleMania 31 and nothing at all has changed for the better. It’s lunacy…but that hasn’t stopped WWE from doing things before, so it might actually happen.
In the event it’s their goal, then it’s best to get our backlash about it out there as soon and as loud as possible so there’s plenty of time for WWE officials to change their minds, rather than waiting until the last minute and complaining in February 2018.
With that in mind, I can immediately think of at least a few better options I would personally rather see go up against Roman Reigns or Brock Lesnar at next year’s WrestleMania, without even having to try to factor in the potential momentum, the “superstar shakeup” or the draft, or anything of that sort.
So, in no particular order, here are a few of those suggestions and why they would be better opponents for Roman Reigns and/or Brock Lesnar than simply repeating WrestleMania 31 all over again.
Brock Lesnar vs. Braun Strowman
This is the most obvious one, as during this very same promo, Braun Strowman came out to put Lesnar on notice as someone he’ll be targeting in the future.
The gut reaction some might have to this is that Strowman is too green, not established enough and “not ready” for such a big match. To them, I say to look at how far he’s come in such a short time and listen to the crowd. Strowman is OVER and he’s already being viewed as the heir apparent to Big Show, which is high praise.
At this rate, Strowman will be more than capable of having a good match with Lesnar at WrestleMania next April and if WWE utilizes him correctly during the next year, he should also be an even bigger star than he currently is.
Also, standing next to Strowman, Lesnar looked small. How many people in the world can say they accomplished minimizing The Beast Incarnate?
Roman Reigns vs. John Cena
If WWE truly believes their campaign that it doesn’t matter what type of a reaction you get, so long as you get a reaction, they need to put their money where their mouths are and book what would be perhaps the most interesting crowd scenario possible in the entire company right now.
What happens when you take two babyfaces who are booed with such vitriol and pit them against each other? Who comes out on top in the eyes of the fans? What chants are birthed?
For Reigns to be the next big thing, the current franchise player needs to pass the torch and this match absolutely must happen somewhere down the line, preferably at WrestleMania.
Roman Reigns vs. The Rock
The Rock is perhaps the biggest movie star in Hollywood right now, turning everything he touches to gold and watching his stock rise every single minute. The guy can basically do no wrong, it seems…save for supporting Roman Reigns at the 2015 Royal Rumble, that is.
That is the only time people didn’t go gaga over The Rock in years and it means there is significant momentum to capitalize on, and quite easily, at that.
The story basically writes itself. The Rock is someone who was pushed by the company until he was rejected. He then turned heel, regained the respect of the audience, and became one of the biggest stars in history. Reigns is missing that heel turn, but he has had an even more energized “die Rocky die” style hatred aimed at him for years now.
All it takes is one promo where The Rock tries to give him some advice of how to connect to the WWE Universe and Reigns rejects it, hits him with a Superman Punch and a spear, and you’ve sold out WrestleMania. Their familial connection and their status at the top of the totem pole screams main event and since there would be a clear divide between who is the babyface and who is the heel, there’s no risk in upsetting the audience (save for when Reigns wins, of course).
Roman Reigns OR Brock Lesnar vs. Samoa Joe
Given the two options, I would prefer to see Brock Lesnar go up against Samoa Joe, as I think Reigns / Joe is more of a dragged out feud kind of scenario instead of a one-shot deal, especially considering how Joe is a heel and Reigns is likely staying a babyface, at least in WWE’s eyes.
There aren’t many people left who seem legitimate enough to actually challenge Brock Lesnar, but Samoa Joe is one of those people. The match hasn’t happened before, which is a bonus, and it would surely offset those who were upset that Joe didn’t have anything to do at WrestleMania this year.
It’s clear WWE values Joe enough to give him a decent spot on the roster and I can only imagine his position in the company going up over the next 12 months, so by that point in time, it will be a necessity for him to be booked in a high-profile match. Now that The Undertaker is done, Lesnar’s match will be the only go-to fight to take that non-title spotlight.
The only downside to having Joe vs. Lesnar is that it would be a heel vs. heel match (assuming neither turns face in the meantime), which is something WWE doesn’t like to do all that often, but that doesn’t mean it negates all chances of it happening. In theory, both The Undertaker and Roman Reigns were babyfaces heading into WrestleMania this year even if that wasn’t the practicality of it, so the same can be applicable to Joe/Lesnar.
Worst case scenario, Reigns vs. Joe would still be a big enough fight for the two of them that wouldn’t feel like it was a lackluster title match or offshoot marquee match.