Roman Reigns, the controversial former member of professional wrestling’s most dominant and intriguing factions in recent years, The Shield, had some scathing remarks regarding CM Punk’s assertion made during his appearance five months ago on Colt Cabana’s Art of Wrestling podcast that he was responsible for the creation of the venerable trio.
Reigns appeared at a Q & A session at the Wizard World Comic Con in Philadelphia and made several jabs at the abruptly departed Punk, saying that the only thing CM Punk created was the Pepsi tattoo on his shoulder, and that, while he admits that there were several hands in the creation and evolution of The Shield, the men ultimately responsible for their success were the three men in the group: Reigns, Dean Ambrose, and Seth Rollins, according to Wrestlezone‘s Nick Paglino.
Reigns comments are sure to incite the vocal internet fan base that has simultaneously supported and defended Punk’s actions while suddenly rejecting Reigns as the “company man” following his win at this year’s Royal Rumble and subsequent challenge of WWE World Heavyweight Champion Brock Lesnar in the main event of this year’s WrestleMania spectacular for the coveted championship. That match ended in shock and surprise when Rollins cashed in his Money in the Bank briefcase and turned the main event into an impromptu three-way, taking advantage of a compromised Reigns, and becoming WWE World Heavyweight Champion.
Those fans seemed to be solidly behind Reigns following the dissolution of The Shield brought about by Rollins turning on his stable mates by hitting Reigns in the back with a chair, decimating Ambrose, and joining The Authority, until the Rumble pay-per-view. Just a few weeks before, popular fan favorite Daniel Bryan returned from a prolonged injury and many had hoped that lightning would strike twice in a row with Bryan winning the Rumble and going on, as he had done the year prior, to win the WWE World Heavyweight Championship at WrestleMania. Upon Bryan’s elimination, the crowd seemed to be dissatisfied with any other outcome, and that vitriol and disappointment found a target in Reigns that even a surprise appearance by Reigns’ cousin, The Rock, couldn’t overcome.
Punk walked out on WWE abruptly following last year’s Royal Rumble and stayed relatively mum about the matter until appearing on Cabana’s podcast late last year. During the appearance, Punk made several outlandish accusations regarding medical care and politics, not the least of which was his claim that the formation of The Shield as a faction was his brainchild. Punk’s claims regarding alleged medical negligence has led to a multi-million dollar lawsuit filed by WWE doc Dr. Chris Amann, filed against both Punk and Cabana — a lawsuit in which WWE has offered their full support to Dr. Amann.
Reigns challenges once again for the WWE World Heavyweight Championship this Sunday, when he competes in the main event of WWE’s latest pay-per-view offering, Payback, as he will face off against former Shield teammates Rollins and Ambrose, as well as “The Viper” Randy Orton, in a fatal fourway for the title. Payback is available on pay-per-view through most cable providers and via the WWE Network, which is free this month for new subscribers.