"Stone Cold" Steve Austin has proven that he's not only one of the most popular WWE wrestlers of all time, but he's also one of the leading voices when it comes to the world of the current professional wrestling product.
His Steve Austin Show podcast, which comes on in a family-friendly and unleashed version each week, is a place where you'll hear some truly expert opinions on the latest news, and so it was only natural that he and Tuesday's guest, Wade Keller of ProWrestling Torch, would set their sights on the controversy surrounding the Royal Rumble 2015.
Particularly, the duo addressed the elephant in the room of Roman Reigns winning the 30-man battle royal to a chorus of boos. The win was so unpopular it spawned a globally trending hashtag on Twitter, #CancelWWENetwork. Why was everyone so angry with the decision to give the match to Roman Reigns?
Because most were in agreement with "Stone Cold" Steve Austin.
"If you're trying to earn the fans respect, you're really starting in the hole because people feel like he's being forced down their throats. He's not ready. They're looking at the body of work. With the two other guys — three total in the Shield — he's doing one-third of the work, come in and shine and get out. Now all the sudden you've got all these gaps to fill in the blanks, and he hasn't been able to fill in those blanks."Austin also accused Reigns of "getting in the corner and taking a nap" during the Rumble match instead of working to win over the admiration of the fans.
"I hate to keep going down that road, but that's what happened. He goes into a corner and takes a nap," he said.
Austin and Keller both agreed that Reigns may have an entitlement problem, with Keller saying that sources that know Reigns personally have said that he's overly confident about his position in the company as its next top guy.
To that, Austin had this to say.
"You can't take it as a given. As soon as you think you're entitled, you're thinking it's a given — no, bad things are gonna happen because it's conveyed in your presentation. It's like when Alabama took on Ohio State. Ohio State was number four, Alabama number one, and I think Alabama assumed they were supposed to win that game and they got the h*** beat out of them because Ohio State went and punched them in the mouth. You can't ever assume that everything's just gonna happen because then you get a h*** of a wakeup call."
Austin also foresaw a disastrous WrestleMania 31 main event if WWE stays the course with the current setup of a babyface Roman Reigns versus a heel Brock Lesnar.
"If you position him [Reigns] as a heel, you've still got to work around the move set, you've still got to work around the work rate, which, you know, at this time, quite frankly, he just does not possess... With everything that I love about Brock Lesnar, who is a good friend of mine, leading that match is not his forte. He's great in there with a great guy that can work and dictate. But those two in the ring, there is not a firm, established, bonafide ring general, who can feel the pulse of that crowd and respond accordingly."Do you agree with Keller and "Stone Cold" Steve Austin on their assessments of Roman Reigns, or were they being too hard on him?