After emerging victorious from the Elimination Chamber last month, Roman Reigns will step up to once again challenge Brock Lesnar for the WWE Universal Championship in the main event of WrestleMania 34, a match three years in the making.
According to Dave Meltzer of the Wrestling Observer Newsletter, the belief within WWE right now is that Lesnar will not be re-signing after his contract expires next month, and that he will ultimately end up back with UFC. Because of that, creative plans right now are to try and get as much heat on the “Beast Incarnate” as possible, which is why Reigns has been cutting promos about Lesnar not caring about WWE or the fans, and how he only shows up to work when the payday or the arena suits him.
This also explains why Brock was booked in a squash match at the recent WWE Live event in Chicago, completely destroying Kane in less than a minute. With how important a market Chicago is for professional wrestling, and how volatile the crowds can be, the idea was to portray Lesnar as someone who doesn’t care and only showed up for 45 seconds to collect his paycheck. It definitely worked, but whether or not that heat will transfer over to live television remains to be seen.
You may recall that WWE tried to build up heat on Lesnar three years ago for the same match at WrestleMania 31, only for him to be one of the most popular stars in the building that night. Reigns, who by all means should have been the sympathetic babyface going in, was booed mercilessly. Seth Rollins was inserted into the match at the last minute in one of Vince McMahon’s most ingenious creative moves in years, but there is no Mr. Money in the Bank this time around.
The Observer is also reporting that Mr. McMahon did have an original plan completely laid out for the Reigns vs. Lesnar rematch at WrestleMania 34, but opted to go in a different direction after the recent photo of Lesnar meeting with Dana White became mainstream news. What that original plan would have looked like is unknown.