Roman turning on Heyman: Smart or Stupid?
After Roman Reigns turning on Paul Heyman on last week's episode of Smackdown, today we discuss was this a smart booking decision? or a stupid one?
I think that it’s fair to say the Tribal Chief’s Universal Championship reign this far has been impressive to say the least. He has shown up and wrecked everyone who has been put before him and left like it’s no big deal. Great reference to his T-Shirt if you ask me!
However, many of these victories have been alongside his cousins, The Usos and of course, Paul Heyman. This seems to have worked a treat for the champion up to this point who has currently reigned for a whopping 483 days and counting with the belt on the blue brand. However, his recent turn on Paul Heyman this past Friday may jeopardise his chances at holding that belt past the Day One PPV when he faces Brock Lesnar for the title.
This turn has been building for a long time, with the return of Brock Lesnar immediately putting strain on Roman and Paul’s relationship, as Roman has never been quiet to voice his concerns that Paul sides with his old client Lesnar over him. This kept building until it finally blew up and Reigns couldn’t take it any longer and as a result, superman punched Heyman. The question we ask today is was that a wise decision? Or was it in fact a purely stupid decision?
The first point to be made is it has been evident since the return of Lesnar that Heyman’s loyalties weren’t solely focused on Roman, and the return of an old client that he stood by for a lengthy period of time was always bound to cause a commotion. Therefore, eliminating Heyman from his side seems wise as it is now impossible for Heyman to double cross the champ. Reigns has always been amazing on the mic and Heyman siding with Reigns seemed strange from the start as he has always been a mouthpiece for his clients, many of which have had very poor promo skills, for example The Big Show, The Undertaker and of course, Brock Lesnar. Therefore, this turn could allow Reigns to prove he didn’t need Paul to constantly speak for him as he has incredible mic work himself.
Furthermore to add to the previous point, this could add more depth to the match at Day One, with many possibilities including the potential absence of Paul heyman from ringside, Paul siding with his former client Lesnar, or perhaps even costing Reigns the Universal Championship for his troubles. However, on the other side of the coin, WWE could in fact go in a totally different direction and have Heyman help Roman retain and regain the champions trust, allowing him back in his corner for the next year. Either way, it seems Heyman will play a pivotal role in this match, and his use has the potential to protect the loser and allow the two to have an outstanding match without one superstar suffering the consequences of a clean loss. However, for the loser, what could be next for them?
If Roman was hypothetically to be screwed out of his championship by Heyman, he could go chasing back after the title and set his sights on getting revenge over his former ‘advocate’. This could add an extra layer to the story between Lesnar and Reigns potentially leading to another rematch later down the line, the most likely being at the Royal Rumble as it is only scheduled for a few weeks after Day One. Reigns can go back to using his own promo skills more regularly and remind everyone how amazing his mic work can be. I’m not saying under Heyman his ability on the mic was never shown, take the amazing promo battle with John Cena for example where he was allowed to take the mic for himself and go back and forth with the 16 time World Champion which was a hilarious and unscripted series of promos including making constant references to missionary.
However this promo ability was certainly tainted and much less frequent with Heyman in the equation. With Paul potentially being ejected from the Bloodline, we could potentially see this with many more opponents in any upcoming feuds, which will add a much more authentic feel to the feud, rather than a mouthpiece like Heyman who speaks for him to people, acting a bit like a middle man. This means promos can flow much better and go back to the back and forths we love to see Roman in.
If it was instead Brock to lose, what could possibly be next for him? For me, there’s only one logical path, which would be for him to win the Royal Rumble a few weeks after Day One, starting his redemption arc towards Wrestlemania, where he could potentially dethrone the Tribal Chief and become a nine time champion. If this was to be the case, I doubt the Heyman storyline could continue after this as it wouldn’t have any more legs. This would be Lesnar’s last chance against Reigns and it could create a very effective build towards the main event at Wrestlemania. However, if he was to lose at Day One and not win the Royal Rumble, I see no plans for him in any upcoming WWE feud. This would then lead to the assumption that he would take yet another break from the company and return when he is needed for a storyline, or perhaps it would help if there was a WWE show in a country with billions in oil money and he could get a huge pay day due to his huge name. If only there was a show like this… oh wait!
It will definitely be interesting to see what happens at Day One surrounding this match, and what the extent of the involvement of Paul Heyman will be. Either way, for the first time in a while WWE have me gripped on a feud and I am struggling to determine what will happen and who will come out victorious, which is the main criteria for a Pay-Per-View. Let us know what you think of Roman turning on Heyman and what you think will happen at the Day One PPV!