Roman Reigns’ Predictable Booking Will Devalue Likely WrestleMania 32 Coronation


Roman Reigns is going to get his WrestleMania moment, but it won’t feel like other coronations.

Roman Reigns is on a path to the WrestleMania 32 main event in Dallas, TX. From the moment the WWE World Heavyweight Championship was announced to be put on the line at the Royal Rumble match, to the second Triple H won. It set up the likely coronation of the former Shield man in about two months.

Injuries have caused this storyline to take place. The Game was reportedly supposed to face Seth Rollins or The Rock at the Show of Shows, but an injury to the former and insurance issues with the latter derailed these plans. It’s unknown what Reigns would have been doing if these issues didn’t arise.

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Unfortunately, the above circumstances have hurt Reigns in his quest, or WWE’s goal, to make him the Top Dog of the company.

At WWE TLC, it finally felt like the former football player had won over the crowd. He viciously assaulted WWE’s authority figure in Triple H with chair shots and a spear that went waves throughout the TD Garden.

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The next night on Raw in the Wells Fargo Center, the same place where Reigns had been booed out of the building just 11 months earlier, graced him with cheers. It was one of the more stunning sights and sounds of the year in WWE and seemed like a bigger turning point than TLC.

So what happened?

For over a decade, John Cena has been headlining WWE shows with no one able to touch him. He won his matches by overcoming the odds, which were continuously built up for him as he defeated dozens of opponents from this predictable storyline method. It was a great way of making him look like a million bucks, but it did nothing for anyone else. This is why if one looks back at WWE from 2006 to 2016, it would be hard to pinpoint who was at the level of Mr. HLR. Maybe CM Punk was from 2011-2013 when he set the modern-day record for the longest WWE Championship reign. Who was headlining WrestleMania and other PPV’s, though? Cena.

Reigns’ booking has quickly replicated this since winning the title on the Raw after TLC. He had all the momentum going for him for the first time since The Shield split in June 2014. Then Vince McMahon started showing up and putting Roman in situations where he would have to overcome an obstacle.

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  • It started with the rematch of Reigns vs. Sheamus for the championship on the first Raw of 2016 with the Chairman as the referee. Then came the announcement of the Royal Rumble title defense. Following this was the “One vs. All” slogan that was repeated for the next three weeks. Add in that “One vs. All” match, which turned into Reigns vs. Kevin Owens, and it just hurt everything that was done at TLC and the night after.

    Not surprisingly, Triple H would win the title coming in at No. 30. It was logical booking to have him enter, win the belt and eliminate Reigns. The story that had been built made sense to lead to this point.

    Then the WWE Fastlane main event was created to involve Reigns, Dean Ambrose, and Brock Lesnar. They will compete against each other with the winner going to WrestleMania 32 to face the Cerebral Assassin for the belt. Putting this in place didn’t help Reigns either.

    Lesnar is on a path to face Bray Wyatt at WrestleMania based on their Raw and Royal Rumble run-ins. Ambrose could be headed towards a match with Chris Jericho for the WWE Intercontinental Championship, as Michael Cole made it a point to announce that the Lunatic Fringe and Y2J had an incident at WWE Night of Champions 2015. The Savior of the WWE has also been showing sporadic heel tendencies.

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    Outside of Triple H, Reigns has no direct path to another WrestleMania match. It means we’re probably getting these two in the headlining match where Reigns will get his revenge and win back the WWE World Heavyweight Championship.

    This is going to be the selling point of WrestleMania 32. While fans are still going to fill up AT&T Stadium and watch on the WWE Network, it is not the most appealing main event because of the expected outcome. WWE has fallen victim to this in recent years with the top match at WrestleMania.

    What about Daniel Bryan’s victory at WrestleMania 30? That was predictable from the start of the storyline, right?

    Roman Reigns is not Daniel Bryan and is nowhere close to being as popular with the WWE Universe. Fans won’t be cheering “Yes! Yes! Yes!” as Roman gets his WrestleMania moment. He might get a pop from the Dallas crowd, but it’s not guaranteed after 70,000 people at Levi’s Stadium booed him out of the venue 10 months ago to the day.

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    If WWE wants to make this match a bit less predictable, make it a triple threat or fatal 4-way for the belt. Reigns probably still wins, but fans would have the thought of “Could this other guy shock everyone and walk out of WrestleMania as the champion?” This scenario is unlikely, though, given the injuries. Stacking multiple Superstars into the main event would hurt the rest of the card.

    On Apr. 3, Roman Reigns is likely going to win the WWE World Heavyweight Championship for the third time in his brief singles career. Is he going to get the coronation the company has been thinking he’ll get and wanting to give him? We’ll see in 63 days.