Not many could have envisioned the dominance Roman Reigns currently holds over WWE. Road Dogg believes the Tribal Chief’s series of matches against Brock Lesnar played a significant role in developing his current position in the company.
WWE has built up Roman Reigns as if he is the final boss in a video game, and thus far, every challenger that has stepped up to take him down has failed. Brock Lesnar has arguably been Reigns’ greatest rival in WWE, he last faced his arch-nemesis at SummerSlam 2022.
The highlight-reel Last Man Standing showdown is considered one of last year’s best matches as Lesnar and Reigns seemingly wrote the final chapter in their long-standing rivalry.
While discussing Roman and Brock’s feud on his Oh You Didn’t Know podcast this week, ‘Road Dogg’ Brian James admitted that Reigns’ success has a lot to do with his series of matches against The Beast Incarnate. The WWE Hall of Famer explained that the main objective of the extended program was not to make Lesnar a bigger name but to showcase Reigns as the undisputed top guy in the company.
“Look, to be quite honest; I don’t think it was ever meant to be that helpful from Brock. Brock is Brock, and Brock’s going to bring to the table what Brock’s going to bring to the table. That means physicality as well as promotability and all of the above. So I think it’s all about building Roman through the whole series. I think the success of Roman today speaks of the success of the series.” [From 1:31:00 onwards]
The history between Roman Reigns and Brock Lesnar in WWE
When Roman Reigns broke away from The Shield in 2015, Vince McMahon took a special interest in the Samoan star and pushed him to go after the WWE World Heavyweight Championship, then held by Brock Lesnar.
After winning the Royal Rumble against fans’ wishes, Reigns headlined WrestleMania 31 against The Beast. However, no one could have anticipated Seth Rollins pulling off “The Heist of the Century” and walking out as world champion.
The WrestleMania match was just the first of many singles matches between Roman Reigns and Brock Lesnar, as WWE couldn’t keep them apart in the years that followed. Reigns and Lesnar even featured in a Triple Threat match at Fastlane 2016 involving Dean Ambrose (Jon Moxley).
The two superstars went on to have bouts at WrestleMania 34, the Greatest Royal Rumble, and SummerSlam events in 2018, before reigniting their conflict two years ago, leading to matches at Crown Jewel 2021, WrestleMania 38, and SummerSlam 2022.
While a section of the WWE Universe might be tired of seeing them cross each other’s paths repeatedly, Lesnar clearly did his bit in ensuring Roman Reigns became one of the biggest draws for the company in the modern era.
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