After a nearly four-month absence, Brock Lesnar returned to the WWE last Monday night on RAW, and as always, right by his side was Paul Heyman. As a matter of fact, it’s interesting to note that of the top three matches on this year’s WrestleMania card, only Roman Reigns and Dean Ambrose have wrestled a full-time schedule, and even Reigns missed a month due to a Wellness Policy violation.
Lesnar will wrestle another match before Triple H, the Undertaker, or Shane McMahon, a clear indication of how WrestleMania has changed the landscape in the WWE recently. So there was Brock, alongside Heyman, selling the SummerSlam showdown against Randy Orton as if nothing had changed. And on screen, little actually had.
Fans know the deal by now. The WWE and Brock Lesnar have agreed to a deal that allows The Beast to work a limited schedule and earn maximum pay. And Heyman is there to sell his client, and his client’s latest feud, to the masses, and he does it better than anyone. However, The Advocate came extremely close to missing out on a match billed as 15 Years in the Making between The Beast and The Viper.
Last week, the Inquisitr reported that Heyman agreed to a new contract with the WWE just hours before last Monday’s episode of RAW. There were conflicting feelings inside WWE headquarters in regards to Heyman, with some believing he’d always be back for the SummerSlam build, and others who felt he might not come back at all. Heyman was looking for a substantial raise while the WWE wasn’t willing to budge much. Things were at an impasse until Brock Lesnar urged the WWE to get it done, and so it was.
Now, with Heyman officially back in the fold (it had also been reported that Heyman would have worked several dates without a contract), Daily Wrestling News is reporting that WWE will use him for more dates, but he’s also requested to have more creative input into his storylines. This likely comes as good news to WWE fans who watched Heyman help SmackDown overcome RAW during the last brand extension in terms of storylines and overall creativity.
It should be worth noting that while Heyman wanted to be paid more, he also wanted to work more dates to justify the pay increase. Ever since he became exclusive to Lesnar, he’s only worked a handful of dates more than his client, and therein lies a potential for something bigger.
Internally, there had been discussions prior to the WWE Draft to make more “Paul Heyman Guys” to help with the brand extension. Clearly, they’ve held off on any of those plans as of yet, and Heyman will focus mainly on his managerial duties in the Lesnar/Orton program. But there are two factors that could potentially lead Heyman to serve in a similar role to another superstar(s).
First, it’s expected that Lesnar will take another hiatus after SummerSlam, or shortly thereafter. And the second hearkens back to Heyman’s interest in having more say in the angles he’s involved in. Heyman has reportedly pitched the idea of being the mouthpiece for either Samoa Joe or Shinsuke Nakamura once they are promoted to the main roster.
It’s debatable whether Joe or Nakamura would even need Heyman in their corner, but it’s likely that a potential pairing would immediately elevate them into the main event conversation. Things didn’t quite work out for Cesaro, Curtis Axel, or Ryback when they were aligned with Heyman, but outside of Ryback’s second feud with CM Punk, their booking remained in the mid-card.
It won’t be long before Samoa Joe and Shinsuke Nakamura get called up from NXT. But with Finn Balor already up, the plan was to wait until NXT had stars ready to carry the flag waiting behind Joe and Nakamura. Will a Balor-sized push be waiting for their arrivals? There has been plenty of buzz surrounding a Brock Lesnar/Samoa Joe match, with many believing it’s even WrestleMania-worthy. Add Paul Heyman to the mix, and things could get extremely interesting.
[Image via WWE]