Dave Meltzer of the Wrestling Observer Newsletter, on the Wrestling Observer Radio, spoke about Survivor Series and mentioned that Roman Reigns still gets backlash from fans for having been chosen over Daniel Bryan back in early 2015.
In case you don’t know the context, Royal Rumble 2015 was when fans had officially turned on Roman Reigns. While there was a good idea that Reigns would be winning the Rumble that year, fans wanted Bryan. Bryan entered at number 10 and was eliminated within 8 minutes.
This caused a great deal of outrage among the fans, many who had hoped for Bryan to win the whole match. Things went from bad to worse when fan favourites such as Dolph Ziggler, Dean Ambrose and Bray Wyatt was eliminated by the likes of The Big Show and Kane.
In retrospect, it looks like WWE tried to get heat on Big Show and Kane so that Roman Reigns would get a pop when he eliminated them, but it turned out to be the complete opposite. When Rusev, the final participant came back into the ring, he was cheered heavily even though he was a heel.
The crowd chanted things such as “We want refunds” during the match.
Since then, Roman has been received very unfavourably. For only a brief period in December was he cheered by the fans but aside from that, he has been receiving the constant backlash.
Here’s a post-match video of Roman Reigns and the Rock after the former won the Royal Rumble match in 2015:
For a long time now, experts such as Steve Austin, Jim Ross,etc. have openly stated that Reigns needs to turn heel in order to become an organic babyface. However, for reasons unknown to the general audience, WWE has stuck their guns with Reigns as a babyface and has insisted on pushing him that way.
Now, every city that the WWE goes to sees a large portion of the audience booing Reigns.
Right before and after his suspension, Reigns seemed to be in a more vulnerable position, taking clean loss after clean loss. However, after that, his rumoured “punishment” was over, as his push down the card simply resulted in a United States Championship victory. It will not be long before Reigns is back in the Universal championship picture.
How WWE plans to ever get Reigns over is unknown. But if it is to be a continued babyface push, then he will continue to be on the receiving end of the fans’ hatred throughout his career.
Do you think Daniel Bryan vs Brock Lesnar would have been a better main event for Wrestlemania 31?
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