There was a big cliffhanger ending on this week’s episode of WWE Smackdown. You can read my review right here if you want to read about what happened.
The show long storyline was that WWE Chairman Vince McMahon assigned WWE Official (Producer) Adam Pearce to get “The Fiend” Bray Wyatt, Braun Strowman and Roman Reigns to sign the contract for the No Holds Barred Universal Championship match at WWE Payback this Sunday. During the show, Pearce got Wyatt and Strowman, but he didn’t get to Reigns until the end of the night.
In the final scene of the show, Reigns said this: “I will be at Payback on Sunday. That is a promise. I will be in the triple threat match, wreck everyone and leave. That is a guarantee. And I will win back my Universal Championship that I never lost in the first place.” Then Reigns turns to his left: “That is not just a prediction, that’s a spoiler.”
The camera pans over to see Paul Heyman sitting beside him. Heyman: “Believe that.” Reigns nodded at Heyman. End show.
So what does it all mean?
According to a report from Mike Johnson of PWInsider, it means Roman is a heel now. Johnson notes that he has confirmed that going forward, WWE plans to push Reigns as the top heel on Smackdown with Paul Heyman as his advocate. (I believe in Mike Johnson a lot as one of the most reliable wrestling reporters out there)
Meanwhile, “The Fiend” Bray Wyatt will become more of a babyface going forward. Right now, he would be considered one of the top faces on Smackdown.
Braun Strowman recently turned heel based on his actions and how the announcers talk about him, so he’ll remain in that role.
As a reminder, “The Fiend” Bray Wyatt defends the Universal Title against Reigns and Strowman at Payback on Sunday.
Keep in mind that if WWE does a draft or a lottery or whatever you want to call it in October as rumored, then that could lead to changes for all of these guys. For now, these are apparently their roles.
It was noted by Johnson that even though there are plans to push Smackdown women’s star Naomi in a “stronger manner” in the weeks ahead. Naomi pinned Bayley last week, so it would make sense to challenge Bayley for the Smackdown Women’s Title soon and perhaps Naomi will put an end to Bayley’s title reign.
TJR Thoughts: The Reigns news is pretty huge. There were fans after SummerSlam guessing that Reigns is a heel now based on his actions. By putting Reigns with Paul Heyman, that solidifies it because Heyman is known for being a heel. Now we have this report from PWInsider and while it seems peculiar at first, it might be the best thing for Reigns. A heel run could do him good in terms of giving him a dominant run as the champion and then he could elevate somebody like Big E when the time is right. There are a lot of options obviously.
As for the Naomi push, I’m all for that too. She’s fun to watch.