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WWE News: Kevin Owens vs. Roman Reigns becomes no DQ match at WWE Royal Rumble

Roman Reigns has been granted No DQ match with Kevin Owens for the Universal Championship at WWE Royal Rumble to even the odds.

Kevin Owens and Roman Reigns face off in a WWE ring

What's the story?

This Sunday at the annual WWE Royal Rumble pay-per-view, Kevin Owens will defend his WWE Universal Championship against Roman Reigns, and their bout has been given one final stipulation. The two Monday Night Raw main eventers will now battle it out in a No Disqualification match.

In case you didn't know...

This is not the first time that Kevin Owens and Roman Reigns will do battle. Their rivalry dates back to late 2016 when the former SHIELD juggernaut and the then-United States Champion began to create splinters in the relationship between Owens and his so-called “best friend” Chris Jericho.

After earning an opportunity at the Universal title at WWE Roadblock: End of the Line, Reigns came within inches of becoming a four-time world champion but was thwarted in his attempts when Jericho interfered, dropping Owens with a Codebreaker.

The match was ruled a disqualification – all part of the Canadian duo's master plan – and the champion retained by default. In the weeks following WWE Roadblock, Reigns was granted a rematch for the Universal Championship at the Royal Rumble, with one major stipulation: Chris Jericho would be suspended above the ring in a shark cage.

The heart of the matter

Despite the shark cage stipulation seemingly evening up the playing field for Roman Reigns, he has endured attack after attack for weeks on Monday Night Raw. Due to more interference, Reigns even lost the U.S. Championship to Chris Jericho, and after yet another disqualification, was unsuccessful in his attempts to regain the gold.

In order to make their impending bout at Sunday's WWE Royal Rumble a fair fight, Raw general manager Mick Foley has announced that in addition to Jericho being trapped above the ring in a shark cage, Kevin Owens will defend the Universal Championship in a No Disqualification match.

What's next?

With all obstacles now removed from his path, and with WrestleMania looming in the distance, many are predicting that Sunday will see a new Universal Champion crowned. That being said, even in a shark cage, you can't count out the shenanigans of the veteran prankster Chris Jericho.

Sportskeeda's Take

Roman Reigns isn't exactly the most universally loved Superstar on the WWE roster, and there are definitely some people that will be cheering for his defeat at the Royal Rumble. That being said, this story over the last few months has been pretty darn entertaining, and if there's a story in place heading into WrestleMania that could better suit Reigns with the title, I'm willing to keep an open mind.

It's worth pointing out though that if he does take the gold to Orlando, this will be the third consecutive year in which Reigns headlined WrestleMania, despite obvious opposition from the WWE Universe. So maybe at the end of the day, they might want to consider going in a different direction.

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