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  #1  
Old 01-25-2016, 10:40 AM
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Default Roman Reigns: Yea or Nay?

I'm not talking about what we think; but rather, what the WWE brass is thinking.

What was the story last night? In the lead-up to Royal Rumble, I firmly believed this was to be Roman's biggest validation yet. I figured he'd conquer all 29 guys gunning for him and emerge stronger than ever; that everyone else would be so hepped up to get Roman out of there that they'd fall prey to sneak attack from others, even as Roman was dropping people left & right.

But it didn't go that way, did it?

First, it can hardly be said groups of wrestlers were hanging up on Roman. He fought who he fought and there were no 'cooperative' efforts to get him out of there.

Second, what in the name of heaven was the reason for keeping him in the back room 'injured' for half the match? If anything, wasn't he supposed to be out there the whole time, valiantly trying to save his title against overwhelming odds? Jeez!

Third, Wasn't part of the attraction of the Rumble the notion of watching Roman tangle with Brock Lesnar, even a little? That didn't happen, either.

Instead, the whole production dragged much of the time while Roman was out of our sight. As Brock single-handedly fought off the Wyatt guys, wrestlers like Jericho and Ambrose lie in corners of the ring for large chunks of time, writhing in pain........with Roman finally re-emerging, charged up as if nothing had happened to him......only to see him eliminated before surprise entrant Triple H could even get at Roman.

Is Roman going to take the whole schmear back from Trips at WM32..... or did they make him look so weak (and almost foolish) last night as a precursor to telling the fans that something new is in store for us, and it doesn't involve Roman Reigns at the top?

Weird, weird, weird.
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  #2  
Old 01-25-2016, 10:55 AM
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The thing is, they did everything in the power to try to get Reigns over. They made the entirety of Raw about him. They brought back Vince McMahon, the best heel character of all time, to give him a better antagonist. They even made the Rumble (which typically has a narrative about opportunity and how anyone has a chance to go to Wrestlemania) all about him - constantlypushing the "One Versus All" thing and whether he could overcome the odds.

At first it kinda seemed to work, and Reigns was getting some amount of good reactions - well, it's hard to not get some good reactions when the entire product is about you. But last night proved that despite what it looked like after TLC, Reigns is not over at all. Getting boo'd in his own state and Triple H getting a pop when Reigns was eliminated. I'm starting to think this is a pet project going wrong.
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  #3  
Old 01-25-2016, 11:12 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mustang Sally View Post
I'm not talking about what we think; but rather, what the WWE brass is thinking.
I'd imagine they're still betting on Reigns in the main event of Mania. I mean, as misguided as it sounds, they seem bound and determined to get this over.

Quote:
What was the story last night? In the lead-up to Royal Rumble, I firmly believed this was to be Roman's biggest validation yet. I figured he'd conquer all 29 guys gunning for him and emerge stronger than ever; that everyone else would be so hepped up to get Roman out of there that they'd fall prey to sneak attack from others, even as Roman was dropping people left & right.

But it didn't go that way, did it?
Well, yes and no. What you're saying is accurate, but the storyline of the match (when Roman was in, and we'll get to that) seemed to circulate on Roman versus The Authority, and their goons. While it's been done, they probably believe Roman is better as a chaser, than the actual champion. And I'm not sure if they're wrong, by the way. There's little evidence to suggest if they're either right or wrong.

Quote:
First, it can hardly be said groups of wrestlers were hanging up on Roman. He fought who he fought and there were no 'cooperative' efforts to get him out of there.
Probably because there was no incentive (except for the League of Nations) to go after Roman.

Remember in 1999, when Vince wanted a Austin out of the Royal Rumble? You'll recall that Vince placed a $100,000 bounty on Austin's head. Whoever eliminated Austin was $100,000 richer.

This time? Well, yes, you get to be champion. But you'd become champion, even if you didn't eliminate Roman. In spite of the moniker of this PPV, this wasn't about one vs. all. Namely, because there was no motivation to gang up on Roman Reigns. You could become champion, and still not go after Roman. Whoever eliminated him didn't become champion, it was if you won the Rumble.

Quote:
Second, what in the name of heaven was the reason for keeping him in the back room 'injured' for half the match? If anything, wasn't he supposed to be out there the whole time, valiantly trying to save his title against overwhelming odds? Jeez!
Now, I'm not so sure why people are upset about this. Look at Roman Reigns; he clearly doesn't have the cardio to do start to finish.

Think of all the guys that last the longest in Rumbles. Consider the guys who come from the first five-ish, and win.

Flair. Michaels. Benoit. Mysterio.

Reigns, clearly, isn't that worker. And that isn't a bad thing, either. But the premise of him starting at #1 was doomed from the beginning, even if fit the idea of what WWE was going for. Hell, they had Austin take the same break in 1999 (though, to be fair, he did win from #5 in 1997).

Quote:
Third, Wasn't part of the attraction of the Rumble the notion of watching Roman tangle with Brock Lesnar, even a little? That didn't happen, either.
Why tease a match that you know isn't going to happen?

Yeah, it might have been cool to see them go. But the point of the Rumble is to set up Mania. Clearly, Triple H and Reigns is the plan, and Brock and Bray is going to be on the card. So you have to establish both of those (although, to be fair, they have long established H and Reigns)

Quote:
Instead, the whole production dragged much of the time while Roman was out of our sight. As Brock single-handedly fought off the Wyatt guys, wrestlers like Jericho and Ambrose lie in corners of the ring for large chunks of time, writhing in pain........with Roman finally re-emerging, charged up as if nothing had happened to him......only to see him eliminated before surprise entrant Triple H could even get at Roman.
If they did Roman and H as the final two, then you and I both know that Roman was gonna get boo'ed. At the least, people cheered Dean against H, but there was a clear babyface pop for Triple H when he eliminated Roman. Unless you want the 2015 Rumble again, then you have to get Reigns out, and find a babyface people will cheer for against H (see; Ambrose)

Quote:
Is Roman going to take the whole schmear back from Trips at WM32..... or did they make him look so weak (and almost foolish) last night as a precursor to telling the fans that something new is in store for us, and it doesn't involve Roman Reigns at the top?
I'd expect that nothing will veer them off the course they want. I will say that Roman should have probably thrown out more people. But unless you wanted that really negative reaction of last year, this was the only way to really book him in the Rumble.
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  #4  
Old 01-25-2016, 11:28 AM
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Roman sitting out on the match was really stupid, yes. But it wasn't all that bad.

Roman didn't face Brock because they wanted to make them look strong. They didn't want Roman in Suplex City and didn't want Brock to be able to suplex Roman.

How I would book it.
LON still beats down Roman. Roman leaves with a stretcher. The LON stay besides the ring in order to guard it. Roman should have bled here, in order to sell the beating more. I know it's PG, but sometimes blood is necessary.

15 minutes after the beatdown, Roman returns with a steel chair and beats the hell out of LON and re-enters the match with stitches. He and Brock exchange brutal shots. Then they take out the Wyatts together. Sheamus enters to keep Reigns occupied while Lesnar is eliminated by the Wyatts. After his elimantion Lesnar hunts down the rest of the family (except Bray) to backstage.

Mainwhile, Roman sells the brutal beatdown by the LON and Lesnar. HHH enters and the rest is history.
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  #5  
Old 01-25-2016, 12:52 PM
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My best guess as to why they kept Roman away for a period of time was a combination of wanting to validate The League of Nations and their ability to feel gainfully employed that night, and not wanting Roman to have to share the ring with so many big names for the entire time.

It defies logic even when I tell it to myself, I really can't explain why I would have done the same thing if I was directing the action that night.

If AJ is stealing what they wanted to be Roman's thunder, then have AJ and Roman duke it out. Let them build tenacity against each other and trade spots until eventually one gets eliminated or they up and decide to work together. AJ could have been used to make Roman look better, but it seemed like they weren't willing to try that.

Roman has potential, he's proven that time and time again. It confuses me to no end that when HHH was pressed for an explanation for Roman's heat he said something like "It's the writers, we just had bad writing." It sounded to me like HHH was passing the blame for something that he should have had direct control over.

That whole League of Nations thing seemed more for the League of Nations and less for a plausible reason for Roman to leave and come back. It was so stupid; EVERYONE knew that Roman would be coming back. There was no shock, there was no pop. Nobody cared when Roman came back because they saw that one coming a mile away, everyone was anticipating that long before it actually happened. To leave and come back when people are already dogging you out for taking naps during the last Royal Rumble was an epic fail on part of WWE Creative. Whoever is deciding the path of Roman's career, they just need to stop. Why would you put Roman in the number one spot, and then give him a twenty minute break!?

For better or worse; Roman Reigns is in the top spot and he's probably not leaving anytime soon. We'll get used to him, and he'll have his fan bases, but they are doing the exact opposite of what they need to do with him if they really want to turn those boos into cheers.
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  #6  
Old 01-25-2016, 01:02 PM
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I have to admit that I thought the same thing and genuinely considered creating a similar thread to this.

Given that Roman Reigns didn't have the ultra dominant night many of us were expecting, I found myself wondering if it was remotely possible that this was the start of moving Reigns out of the main event spot. I mean, Reigns does have a rematch and there's still the Fastlane ppv before WrestleMania, so it's logical to think that's when said rematch will happen instead of waiting 2.5 months down the road.

One reason I was considering this possibility was due to Reigns not being much of a draw. Looking at some of Raw's numbers during the time Reigns was getting his big push beginning really in the fall, Raw had some of the worst ratings in its history. While Monday Night Football always takes a toll, the numbers were just abysmal for Raw and Reigns was essentially the centerpiece during this timeframe. Whenever Reigns has been in the main event spot on Raw, the numbers for the third hour have taken a nosedive; while a drop off during hour 3 is pretty common, they're not usually as significant. If hour 1 drew an average of say 3,800,000, hour 2 drew something like 3,695,000 then hour 3 would drop somewhere to the 3,200,000 range and viewer fatigue is too easy an explanation for each and every week.

However, I don't think WWE is done with Reigns and I think Vince is going to insist on pushing forward with him. I just don't see Reigns not having his big WrestleMania moment by capturing the title from Triple H. It just doesn't strike me as being in Vince's nature to give up on something he massively wants until/unless he has absolutely no other choice and that's an extraordinarily rare thing.
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  #7  
Old 01-25-2016, 02:11 PM
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They have to go through with it, Triple H winning is indicative of that, don't want another Punk2.0 and I know this isn't the same as Punk was over, Reigns isn't but this isn't the time to pull the plug, a Reigns heel turn should at least be explored first and if even that doesn't work out then he puts over a babyface and move on from there.
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Old 01-25-2016, 02:20 PM
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Yeah, I think they're still full-steam ahead in regards to Roman Reigns. He's now a 2 time World Champion and it feels like he hasn't held the title once to be honest... once he wins it at Mania (assuming HHH carries it into Mania) he should be in store for a pretty long title reign and that's where the real scrutiny will begin. I'm of the opinion that this has been the plan from the moment Reigns took out HHH at Survivor Series. They knew he was going to win the title the next night, they knew he was going to lose it at the Rumble, and I'm assuming it's locked in that he'll win it again at Mania. It seems that this has always been the plan.

As for all the other stuff, it seems like WWE was just trying to protect Reigns. It would have been difficult for somebody like Roman to enter at number one and go for an entire hour +. As has been mentioned, even Austin got a break when he entered at one. I guess he didn't meet Brock because they were finished teasing the match? I don't know, I just think Brock as a whole was handled like shit last night. Reigns punks him out on Raw, Wyatt punks him out at the Rumble, and Lesnar just walks out. I totally expected him to come in and, if nothing else, destroy Bray.
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Old 01-25-2016, 02:22 PM
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Boy, wouldn't WWE want to know what it will take to get Reigns over? And for once, I refuse to blame creative. This is all on Vince/management.

I understand why they want Reigns to succeed so badly. He has the looks, he has the size, and most importantly, he looks marketable. Inside Shield, he was over as well. Then what happened? Simple. Word shouldn't have gotten out. They pushed him, and pushed him hard. They were ready to sacrifice everyone to get Reigns over. He went up against the who's who on the roster and came up short only when they realized that people haven't accepted him. And why should they? Reigns' story is told wrong.

People accept a character/story when there is a tinge of reality mixed. Reigns' story has no reality. First off, in many people's mind, Reigns hasn't paid his dues. Secondly, his skills are not on par with someone who can be the 'man' or 'face' of WWE. I mean look at every past 'face' of WWE. From Hogan to Stone Cold to Rock to John Cena, all of them proved themselves before being given the ball. Reigns has been given the ball way before he proved he can hang with the best. Can he do it? I don't know if WWE knows that at this point. So, what's the solution?

In my mind, the best thing they can do for him is turn him heel. And no, it's not 'everyone should turn heel' thing. It's simply embracing reality. People already know Vince wants him as the top dog. It's easier to show that on screen than trying to fool people into believing Roman is an underdog. A Daniel Bryan or CM Punk worked as underdog because people perceived them as people WWE wouldn't get behind. Reigns is not that man. Make him the authority's champion. Join hands with them. It'll be way easier for people to accept that than 'All vs one' BS they keep on trying to feed. As a heel he'll have more freedom to expand his character and will have Stephanie or Triple H to carry it on the mic while he improves.

If they continue down this path, Roman Reigns is guaranteed to continue getting booed.
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  #10  
Old 01-25-2016, 02:58 PM
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Last night was a complete and total failure in terms of trying to get Roman Reigns over as a face. A babyface champion doesn't walk out of a title defense and then come back at the end of the match. If Reigns had been wheeled out on the stretcher, that might have worked. If he'd struggled back into the ring and continued to fight, that might have worked. But willingly walking to the back like a coward and then coming back at the very end of the match, that's a heel move.
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