Greatest Royal Rumble Preview: WWE Universal Championship Match

Roman Reigns enters Saudi Arabia with the mindstate of returning to North America as Universal Champion after his face off with Brock Lesnar in a steel cage at The Greatest Royal Rumble.

New Orleans – Resentment and an all around distaste were the feelings surrounding the main event of WrestleMania 34. Where Asuka/Charlotte, the Intercontinental Championship Match and Ronda Rousey’s debut shined, Brock Lesnar vs. Roman Reigns, WWE’s experiment on making Reigns “the guy”, has been nothing more than a walking train wreck.

Photo: WWE

As rumored by the likes of PWInsider and Wrestling Observer Newsletter, the match outcome was changed for Lesnar to retain at WrestleMania in a good match that the fans didn’t care for one bit and that was to be expected. WrestleMania crowds are typically some of the snarkiest, outspoken, opinionated crowds that rival the Raw and Smackdown shows when they are in England. It was stated that by Lesnar going over against Reigns, the intent was to soften the opinion of the fans on Reigns. However, that wouldn’t be the case either, the vocal anti-Roman fan base still isn’t convinced and the intrigue on this match isn’t worth the time of day to many fans and analysts alike, even with the steel cage stipulation added.

Photo: WWE

To be frank, it is hard to watch because Reigns isn’t a bad wrestler. He’s not on the level of workers like Seth Rollins, Finn Balor and A.J. Styles, but he’s a capable worker. He isn’t as popular as those aforementioned names, then adding Samoa Joe, Bobby Roode, Jeff Hardy, John Cena and then you add the rising stock of Braun Strowman and a returning Bobby Lashley to the mix, the question to many is why WWE is continuing to make this experiment work? The answer is this. If they don’t go all in (pun intended) at Greatest Royal Rumble, this will continue to be the heart of WWE storylines year after year until either he is over, or WWE just stops.

Since this is a Cage Match, the stipulation is tailor made for some shenanigans. Due to its no disqualification rule, this is a match that will make sure that Reigns will get beaten within an inch of his life, but escaping barely via Escape and winning his first Universal Championship, a title he’s been chasing for over a year.

Winner: Roman Reigns via Escape

Photo: WWE

This is the most unpopular decision, however in the long haul this will do some good for the future booking on Raw. Monday Night Raw right now after the shakeup is in a odd spot, but their main event picture is still solid nonetheless. Reigns winning the championship opens up the possibilities. Potentially, there are matches to be have against the likes of Kevin Owens, Sami Zayn, Braun Strowman, Finn Balor, Seth Rollins, Bobby Roode, a returning Dean Ambrose and Lashley. Lesnar continuing to hold the championship make people feel that no one is worthy of challenging the championship with the relative ease of him defeating opponents.

Reigns winning gives fans hope. Now, that may sound like it doesn’t makes sense because the “corporate guy” potentially winning the championship. However, Reigns has went down cleanly on numerous occasions. Although, he has been booked strongly, Reigns took a lot more clean losses putting over the likes of Seth Rollins, Dean Ambrose, Finn Balor, Braun Strowman and Brock Lesnar. As long as WWE continues to push this man to the top of the card, the likelihood of Reigns losing is still pretty strong because Reigns in defeat still is portrayed strongly and with the disdain of the fans, a Roman Reigns win does favors for anyone who takes him on in a rivalry.