WWE Rumors: "Fire Goldberg" chants raise more concern about Goldberg vs. Lesnar
What's the story?
Last night during Raw and especially during the commercial breaks, fans chanted, "fire Goldberg." These chants were brought about by a storyline, wherein Stephanie McMahon ordered Mick Foley to fire someone on the Raw roster.
In case you didn't know...
Goldberg beat Brock Lesnar in 86 seconds at Survivor Series. He was originally meant to lose the match and headline the 2017 Hall of Fame, however, Goldberg was so over with audiences that Vince McMahon negotiated a three-match extension with Goldberg and had him beat Lesnar at Survivor Series.
The story arc would see Goldberg capture the WWE Universal Title before dropping the belt to Brock in a rematch at WrestleMania. Goldberg defeated Kevin Owens in 21 seconds at Fastlane to become WWE Universal Champion and will now head to the Main Event of WrestleMania 33, where he is booked to drop the title to Brock Lesnar.
The two first met at WrestleMania XX, in a match that was hijacked by the WWE fans at MSG. Both men received negative chants throughout the match. The negative reaction was because smart fans knew that both men were leaving, however, it did not help matters that the match itself was terrible.
The heart of the matter
As discussed on our “Raw in 30” show on The Dirty Sheets Podcast (click Soundcloud link below to listen) you could clearly hear the "fire Goldberg" chants in the background, while Stephanie McMahon was telling Mick Foley he had to fire someone. The Foley and Stephanie segment immediately followed the Heyman and Lesnar promo that opened the show.
This probably didn't help things. Especially as Brock was in attendance and ever-popular, while Goldberg himself wasn't on the show. However, WWE already had concerns going into Raw based on the fans reaction to Goldberg in Chicago, IL, the previous week.
This was mentioned by Peter Rosenberg on "Bring it to the table", which aired after Raw last night. He mentioned fans possibly cooling on Goldberg and even bought up WrestleMania XX at MSG.
Goldberg and Brock Lesnar will collide for the WWE Universal Title on Sunday, April 2nd at WrestleMania, which is under three weeks away.
The match is currently pencilled in to go on last, however, if officials continue to fear a backlash, similar to that of WrestleMania XX, then the higher-ups are likely to move the match to earlier on, with either Randy Orton vs. Bray Wyatt or The Undertaker vs. Roman Reigns going on last instead.
While Lesnar is scheduled to appear at every Raw before WrestleMania, Goldberg is not set to appear again till the go-home show on March 27th in Philadelphia. The reaction on the go-home episode of Raw may dictate where Goldberg vs. Lesnar is actually positioned on the card.
Dave Melzer, like myself, believes that the match is currently scheduled to close out the show. Meltzer also believes that the current plans are for Lesnar to defeat Goldberg in quick fashion to conclude WrestleMania 33 as the new WWE Universal Champion, as he reported via his Wrestling Observer Newsletter.
However, my sources have told me that the aim is to go 8-10 minutes.
The WWE officials are right to be concerned about the crowd response at WrestleMania. Fans are audibly beginning to turn on Goldberg. While fans were originally happy to see Goldberg, some fans have certainly been turned off by his latest squash match and handing him the WWE Universal Title at the expense of Kevin Owens.
In addition to that, fans have never hated Brock Lesnar. Brock is a legit tough guy who’s been booked as a monster that people respect. For the first time in years, Brock is being booked as an underdog who has to overcome an obstacle.
The WWE may have unknowingly booked Brock into an extreme babyface role, where fans want to see him prevail and conquer the obstacle that is Goldberg.
It is hard to work out the reaction that the WWE want for Brock Lesnar and what reaction they want for Goldberg. They certainly don’t want the fans to boo the entire match, however, I don’t think they will be bothered if the fans are split or choose a side.
If the fans cheer for Brock, then it doesn’t matter because Goldberg is leaving anyway and they send their fans home happy. If fans cheer for Goldberg, then the WWE will crown a monster heel as a Champion, who will pass the torch on to a chosen babyface at SummerSlam 2017.
It’s really a win-win situation. Providing there is no repeat of the antics from WrestleMania XX in 2004, I am predicting that the WWE will be okay. I believe the match will go on last, Brock will win in under 10 minutes and the crowd will be split around 75% to 25% in favour of the Brock Lesnar – the man who has been positioned by the WWE to overcome the odds.
Be sure to listen to me on “The Dirty Sheets” podcast, for the latest breaking news and rumours, as we edge ever closer to WrestleMania 33 in under 3 weeks time.
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