Do you think WWE rushed Seth Rollins back?
Seth Rollins was originally scheduled to miss six to nine months when he tore the ACL, MCL and medial meniscus in his right knee last November. He ended up returning to action just a couple days before it would have been six months so he clearly beat even the earliest of estimates. The concern I’ve heard isn’t that he wasn’t ready to return but that he’s working way too much. As we pointed out a few days ago, Rollins worked 15 matches in June and has worked three matches in July and it’s the fifth of the month. Obviously WWE’s medical staff feels he’s able to compete at a high rate and he’s confident his knee is structurally sound but I wish they would scale it back. Rollins suffered a tough injury and I think I speak for everyone when I say I hope he’s able to stay healthy.
Let’s talk rosters; who do you view as headliners for Raw and Smackdown?
The talk since the idea of the brand extension being revived came up was that it would be the John Cena brand and the Roman Reigns brand with everyone else fitting in around them, however, I believe there are real opportunities for some other guys to be headliners in the absence of Reigns. We have another question that addresses him specifically so I won’t share my opinion of his future here but I will say Reigns’s suspension came at a time when Vince McMahon had begun to waver and the stock of AJ Styles is soaring. After Styles’s match against John Cena at Money in the Bank, Vince came out of it feeling AJ was a guy that he could trust to work in the top of the card and is a huge fan. I honestly never thought someone like Styles would be a guy Vince McMahon would be that high up on but so far, Vince thinks very highly of him. Obviously the part-time talent like Brock Lesnar and Undertaker (assuming he comes back) are always going to be top attractions but they won’t be brand staples because they do not tour. Cena will still headline a brand but I wouldn’t be one bit surprised if it’s a cluster of other guys that try and grab the brass ring.
Are you willing to bet me that Brock Lesnar will go KNOCKED OUT at UFC 200 on Saturday?
Absolutely not! First of all, I don’t gamble [aside from fantasy sports] and secondly, I don’t think there is any way to gauge Brock Lesnar for Saturday’s fight. WWE promotional machine aside, Brock is a beast and I don’t think he’s going to get dominated but he hasn’t fought in so long it’s impossible to tell. I would have a hard time believing that WWE would OK the fight if they thought Mark Hunt was going to run through him but it’s just going to have to be one of those things we’re going to have to wait and see. If Brock wins, WWE is going to take full advantage and make that a big selling point for SummerSlam. If he loses, they can still manage it although the argument is there that he will no longer be able to be billed as the unstoppable beast. A loss would make Vince’s decision to have Brock end The Undertaker’s streak a bad one.
I’ve read what you all have written - Roman Reigns and his card position is safe but I just can’t help but think he’s going come back less than he was. Don’t you think that’s rather obvious?
I actually think it’s rather obvious the card position of Roman Reigns IS SAFE because he’s in the WWE Battleground main event even though WWE knew they were going to have to suspend him for the build. But, like I mentioned above and have written earlier, I do believe Vince is FINALLY starting to have some doubts. For years, even at the expense of big pay-per-views, Vince has forced Roman Reigns and it just hasn’t worked. There have been glimmers of hope but it usually leads back to the same debate - is Reigns a viable top babyface? Steve Austin said a long time ago that WWE had to turn Reigns heel and that may ultimately be the only solution. The suspension also happened at a time for Reigns when Vince is really high up on Styles and Rollins; the only saving grace could be they are currently working as heels. My personal opinion on Reigns is that he does have extraordinary talent just like his fellow Shield members of Dean Ambrose and Seth Rollins. The problem is Vince has tried to force a direction the majority of fans still reject.