Following the announcement that former WWE World Heavyweight champion Roman Reigns was suspended for 30 days due to a violation of the company’s wellness policy, the “Samoan Superman” was forced to address his peers.
According to Dave Meltzer of The Wrestling Observer (via Wrestling Inc), Reigns was reportedly ordered to apologize to the WWE locker room before he was sent home. The apology was said to have received mixed reviews, with some feeling that Reigns should not have been humiliated. Others, however, felt it was the right thing to do.
WWE suspends former World Heavyweight champion Roman Reigns 30 days for violating talent wellness policy. pic.twitter.com/Ddpx8jFHLc
— SportsCenter (@SportsCenter) June 21, 2016
The decision to make Reigns apologize reportedly came from Triple H and not Vince McMahon. Mark Carrano, a top WWE executive was the one who ordered Reigns to issue the apology following Triple H’s decree.
Reigns, 31, received credit from a lot of fans and people within the industry for “owning up” to his mistake. However, there have been conflicting reports as to how the WWE — and McMahon — planned on addressing Reigns’ failed test. According to a report from Ringside News, McMahon allegedly wanted to ignore Reigns’ violation and pretend that it never happened. Reigns’ punishment was simply going to be losing the WWE championship at WWE Money in the Bank— as officials knew of the failed test before the show — and that being the end of it.
Instead, the news of Reigns’ failed test leaked and the WWE decided to address the matter publicly. Then, on Monday Night RAW, the company actually addressed Reigns’ failed test. In the past, suspended WWE superstars — especially for a wellness policy violators — were removed from television and not mentioned until their return.
“Well, it’s embarrassing for the talent,” WWE Hall of Famer Jim Ross said about Reigns’ suspension during an appearance on Submission Radio. “I have no idea what substance that he, you wanna hope invariantly, was taking. There’s a lot of the wrestlers, men and women, that are really big into the supplements out of the health food stores, and if they’re not careful and they don’t really vet it and see what’s on those ingredients, they can be inadvertently taking something that’s against the wellness program. So I’m assuming that’s what he did.”
Ross isn’t the only one looking to see this situation positively, as McMahon is looking to cash in on it as well. According to PWTorch, McMahon wants to use the entire suspension as a “redemption story” for Reigns. The idea would be that Reigns’ morale and confidence took a huge blow and the hope is that fans get behind him. Ever since he won the 2015 Royal Rumble, Reigns has struggled to get the type of consistent fan support that WWE desires.
While the WWE’s intended direction for Reigns’ return isn’t clear. There are two things for certain: he’s going to be in the triple threat WWE championship match at WWE Battleground against Seth Rollins and Dean Ambrose, and the suspension was costly for Reigns’ wallet.
OFICIAL: Combate anunciado para WWE Battleground: Ambrose vs. Reigns vs. Rollins por el Campeonato Mundial de WWE. pic.twitter.com/GSnnYWShcB
— Universo de WWE ™ (@WWESport_es) June 21, 2016
Per Meltzer’s report, suspended superstars do not get paid their downside guarantee or regular wrestling pay. Since Reigns was set to compete in the main events of every house for the next month, he’ll likely lose out on approximately $100,000. However, since he’ll be at Battleground, Reigns will not be missing out on pay-per-view money since that’s where WWE superstars make the most. Reigns will still receive his money for royalties and merchandise.
[Featured Image via WWE]