A month ago this week, news leaked that WWE officials were planning a Brock Lesnar vs. Roman Reigns Universal Championship main event for WrestleMania 34 next year in New Orleans. It was interesting to peel back the curtain on backstage plans for an event a year out, even though they hadn’t decided on which match would headline WrestleMania 33 until the last minute. Both Lesnar and Reigns’ match were under heavy consideration, with the Undertaker’s probable retirement ultimately being the deciding factor.
If officials go through with Brock Lesnar and Roman Reigns closing out next year’s WrestleMania, it’ll be Reigns’ fourth straight ‘Mania main event and the second time within that time frame that he’ll face Lesnar in that spot. The two, of course, faced off for the WWE World Heavyweight Championship in the main event in Santa Clara at WrestleMania 31.
The match will go down as one of the more memorable WrestleMania main events, but as fans will recall, neither Brock Lesnar nor Roman Reigns walked out as champion. Instead, Seth Rollins cashed in his Money in the Bank briefcase and pinned Reigns to become the new champion and the first superstar ever to cash in at a WrestleMania. Both Reigns and Lesnar would eventually get their shots against Rollins, but they have yet to establish closure to their own rivalry.
The storyline for next year’s proposed WrestleMania main event has practically already written itself. As noted, Reigns and Lesnar have not squared off again in a singles match since that night in 2015. Not only that, but Brock and Roman are now the only two superstars to defeat the Undertaker at WrestleMania, as the Deadman walks away from the WWE with a ‘Mania record of 23-2.
On last week’s episode of RAW, Lesnar came to the ring with his new Universal Championship after defeating Goldberg alongside his advocate, Paul Heyman. Heyman would make direct mention of the “2 in 23-2,” foreshadowing another showdown between Brock and Roman Reigns. The WWE’s goal is to save that match for WrestleMania 34, while Braun Strowman is being groomed as Lesnar’s first challenger to the title. However, there is talk that the match may not happen until SummerSlam.
Strowman and Reigns will resume their feud in the interim, with the two being penciled in as the main event for Payback on April 30, seeing as how there will be no top championship defended on the card. As is often the case in the WWE, things are always subject to change, but with the potential of Reigns vs. Lesnar looming for next year, their first encounter was a major topic of discussion during Roman’s recent appearance on Chris Jericho’s podcast.
Brock Lesnar has been a part of some memorable squash matches during his most recent run in WWE. He squashed John Cena in a SummerSlam main event, but was also on the receiving end of a squash during last year’s Survivor Series against Goldberg. Reigns revealed to Jericho that both Lesnar and Heyman pitched the idea to squash Reigns in their WrestleMania 31 main event bout, as transcribed by Wrestling Inc.
“No, it wasn’t easy, by any means. But the thing I had a lot of confidence in is I knew it was just going to be a fight. I knew it was going to be brutal and I like that s–t. Like, hey, if you want to bang, I’m all for it. I’m never scared. But it was just weird. It really was. It was last minute. It was one of those deals where it wasn’t a lot of talking, didn’t seem open to ideas because, essentially, in their minds, and when I say ‘their minds’ I say Brock and Paul, which, that is a powerful pairing right there. But those two, they’re something else. They wanted to kill me. They were convinced however many people were there eighty [thousand], whatever, they wanted to see me get crushed. They were there and they just want to see Roman get his ass beat. And I can’t disagree with them, but brother [has] got to fight. Hey, you can kick my ass all you want, but I’m going to fight.”
Reigns was able to thwart any attempts of a squash match, but he becomes the second full-time star to complain about a Brock Lesnar match at WrestleMania. If you recall, Dean Ambrose had issues with the booking of his match against Lesnar at WrestleMania 32, wishing it could have been more hardcore, but those pitches were rejected at every turn. Lesnar has had memorable bouts with the Undertaker and Goldberg at WrestleManias 30 and 33, but he has apparently made life more difficult for the two in between with Ambrose, and Roman Reigns before that.
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