Opinion: Does Roman Reigns Need the Shield To Get Over?
Roman Reigns has had an up and down journey through WWE. While it has seemed clear that the powers that be--namely Vince McMahon--want him to be the face of the company, he has largely struggled when positioned in that role.
The guy has a terrific look, he’s powerful and athletic, he’s got charisma, and he can hold his own for three-star matches, which is more than some historical faces of WWE could claim.
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However, whether it’s sense of favoritism around him, the presence of more compelling stars like Daniel Bryan and Dean Ambrose on the roster, or turning in subpar performances in some high profile situations, like the last two WrestleMania main events, he just can’t seem to get hardcore fans behind him.
There have been specific occasions when the fans were behind Reigns, though, and those periods were inextricably linked to when he was a part of The Shield.
As a young trio debuting together, Reigns, Dean Ambrose, and Seth Rollins were unmistakably cool and put on terrific six-man tag matches.
Their two reunions have been similarly well received, and the second seemed not so coincidentally timed to align with Reigns finally capturing the Universal Championship over SummerSlam weekend.
So the question becomes, does Roman Reigns need the Shield to get over? These five slides consider the question in a point-counterpoint format.
#5 Point: Match Quality
While Roman Reigns is respectable in-ring worker, he’s a far cry from the best in-ring worker in the world today that he claimed to be on the WWE Networks Straight to the Source.
When clustered with Dean Ambrose’s more chaotic penchant for violence and Seth Rollins’s innovation and athleticism, Reigns’s more limited move set is better protected, and his explosive power can be more appropriately highlighted.
If we’re to chronicle the most universally agreed upon best matches of Reigns' career, most of them would be as part of The Shield working opposite Team Hell No and friends, squaring off with the Wyatt Family, or working other trios like Evolution and New Day.
In short, when Reigns wrestles as part of The Shield rather than as a singles performer, the matches tend to be significantly better. Better matches get fans invested and, at the end of the day, can go a long way toward getting Reigns more over—especially at the top of the card.