Unlike his opponent at Survivor Series Bill Goldberg, Brock Lesnar’s return to Raw on Monday night didn’t do much for the live crowd or for the fans watching at home. It was actually the most awkward segment involving Lesnar since his face-to-face meeting with John Laurinaitis back in 2012, and it was, by far, Paul Heyman’s worst performance since he rejoined Lesnar four years ago.
Last week, Goldberg accepted Brock Lesnar’s challenge, and this week we were supposed to get Lesnar’s response. But, that’s not exactly what we got. The purpose of the segment was to get the fans in Minneapolis, Minnesota — which is where Lesnar is billed from — to chant for Goldberg, and even though Heyman tried to get that done, he failed miserably.
The segment was awkward for a few reasons, with the biggest one being that towards the end of the segment, Heyman had to pretend that the live crowd was chanting for Goldberg, when instead they were chanting “GOLDBERG SUCKS!” Of course, everyone figured that Lesnar would be cheered in Minneapolis — everyone except for WWE chairman Vince McMahon, that is.
According to Bryan Alvarez of the Wrestling Observer Newsletter, Vince believed that Heyman could turn the Minneapolis crowd against Lesnar, and when he was unable to, the WWE chairman flipped out backstage and decided to abruptly end the segment.
“So Goldberg does this great babyface promo on Raw last week, and everyone is talking about it. Now, Brock is going to do his rebuttal, and the show is in Minneapolis, Minnesota. This whole thing was designed to get the fans to chant for Goldberg, and Paul is pretending that half of the building is chanting for Goldberg, when, at best five percent of the building is chanting for him. Then the fans started to chant ‘GOLDBERG SUCKS!’ and, what happened is, backstage, Vince McMahon blew a gasket, he played Brock’s music, and they just ended it.”
During the segment, you could see that both Heyman and Brock knew that the segment wasn’t working because they were talking to each other off mic in the ring, and throughout the segment, you could see Brock laughing because the crowd was refusing to chant for Goldberg.
Making sure Goldberg is cheered at Survivor Series is WWE’s top priority. They’re worried that Goldberg, who essentially ended Bret Hart’s in-ring career by giving him a concussion back in 2000, will be booed against Lesnar at the event, because the Canadian fans won’t forget about what the former WCW megastar did to the Canadian hero. Furthermore, Brock has adopted Canada as his new home country, so the Survivor Series crowd in Toronto will probably look at Goldberg as a foreigner, and cheer Lesnar because, to them, “The Beast” is representing their home country.
During Monday’s Raw, WWE announced that Goldberg will appear on next week’s Halloween show in Hartford, Connecticut. He’ll probably end up doing an in-ring segment with Paul Heyman, even though, as of this writing, Heyman isn’t being advertised for the show. But, he also wasn’t advertised for last week’s show in Denver, Colorado, and he ended up appearing on it.
As of right now, Brock Lesnar isn’t scheduled to appear on WWE television again until November 14 in Buffalo, New York, just six days before the Survivor Series show. Goldberg is advertised to appear on that show as well, so we’ll likely get an in-ring face off with the two superstars. Who knows? Maybe we’ll see Goldberg breakout the Spear for the first time in a dozen years.
Goldberg vs. Brock Lesnar will probably be the only singles match at the Survivor Series show, as all other matches will be traditional Survivor Series-style matches. It’ll probably close the show as well.
[Featured Image by WWE]