Although it’s been a few months since he was relieved from his position as executive director of Monday Night Raw, Paul Heyman remains a vital part of WWE’s creative process, as he has reportedly been instrumental in Roman Reigns’ recent transformation into a heelish character.
Citing a members’ only report from Fightful Select, Sportskeeda wrote on Tuesday that Heyman was “heavily influential” in the booking of Reigns following his return from a months-long hiatus at SummerSlam on August 23. The industry veteran was credited for coming up with the idea for his onscreen revelation as Reigns’ new manager, as well as the finish of the Triple Threat Match at Payback that saw “The Big Dog” win the Universal Championship from “The Fiend” Bray Wyatt.
In addition, Heyman reportedly was the man behind the promo segment on last week’s Friday Night SmackDown, where he and Reigns celebrated the latter’s Universal title victory and revealed the reasons why they teamed up with each other in storyline.
Further citing Fightful Select, Sportskeeda added that Heyman’s offscreen role in developing Reigns’ villainous gimmick is similar to how he had previously worked alongside Brock Lesnar, Goldberg, and Ronda Rousey to flesh out their in-ring characters. The longtime wrestling mainstay had primarily served as Lesnar’s “advocate,” cutting promos as his mouthpiece and building him up for his high-profile matches at WWE pay-per-views.
While Heyman was largely portrayed as the brains behind his partnership with Lesnar, Wade Keller of PWTorch wrote earlier this week that his current role as Reigns’ “special counsel” is different in one notable way. As it seems, he is now being portrayed as the “nervous subservient” to the man he’s managing, as opposed to being the one who pulls the strings and does almost all of the talking for his client.
“This is the Reigns I always envisioned would be the blockbuster generational star for WWE,” Keller added. “I’m eager to see how this translates to his in-ring style during a match.”
Prior to the new report, Dave Meltzer noted on Wrestling Observer Radio that Reigns and Heyman were paired up last month so that the former executive director could have something to do following his dismissal. With Lesnar inactive since WrestleMania 36 in April and, as reported by PWInsider last week, apparently a free agent, Heyman did not have an on-air role for several months. However, it appears that his team-up with Reigns will allow him to keep appearing on television, now that he’s no longer overseeing Raw‘s creative affairs.