For well over three years, The New Day has been one of WWE’s most popular acts, a tag team/stable that has won several championships while moving a ton of merchandise. Despite occasional rumors of WWE turning them heel due to the perceived staleness of their characters, the company has maintained the team’s good-guy alignment since they first turned babyface early in 2016. However, a recent report suggests that might soon change, now that New Day member Xavier Woods is expected to miss significant time with an Achilles injury.
On Sunday, WrestlingNews.co reported that WWE is planning on “doing something different” with The New Day in the aftermath of Woods’ injury and the team’s overall bad luck in recent episodes of Friday Night SmackDown. On SmackDown’s October 4 premiere on Fox, then-WWE Champion Kofi Kingston lost his title to Brock Lesnar in a matter of seconds. And just last Friday, Kingston and Big E lost a match to the duo of Robert Roode and Dolph Ziggler.
Given how Kingston hasn’t had much of a reaction to his WWE Championship loss to Lesnar, WWE is reportedly hoping to finally take this into account and shake things up for him and Big E. While there have been some suggestions to split up the two remaining healthy New Day members, WrestlingNews.co wrote that WWE owner Vince McMahon is apparently more inclined to having the duo turn heel.
Apart from WrestlingNews.co’s hint that the changes might be coming “soon,” it’s not clear when WWE plans to turn The New Day, or if Woods will be included in the heel turn while he recovers from his injury. However, The New Day — represented by Kingston and Big E — will be among the nine tag teams competing in the Tag Team Turmoil match at Thursday’s Crown Jewel pay-per-view in Saudi Arabia.
The New Day was first formed in late 2014 as a dancing, hand-clapping group of wrestlers determined to spread the “power of positivity.” As noted by Bleacher Report, the group turned heel in the spring of 2015 after fans initially didn’t take well to their gimmick. However, it was the positive crowd reaction to these heel antics that convinced WWE to turn them one year later and maintain their babyface alignment in the three-plus years that followed.
Per WrestlingNews.co, this isn’t the first time that a second heel turn has been teased for The New Day. The publication wrote that WWE planned to turn them into villainous characters after they lost their Raw Tag Team Championships to The Bar (Sheamus and Cesaro) in late 2016, only for the company to have second thoughts after considering their strong merchandise sales.