The pairing of Paul Heyman and new WWE Universal Champion Roman Reigns was not something that was just put together in the last week or so.
It was noted by Dave Meltzer on the Sunday Night’s Main Event podcast that Reigns’ turning heel with Heyman has been in the cards for some time, and was not just thrown together for the lead up to last night’s WWE Payback pay-per-view, which saw Reigns capture the title by defeating Braun Strowman and former champion “The Fiend” Bray Wyatt in the No Holds Barred main event.
Reigns has wanted to turn heel for some time. It’s believed that WWE pulled the trigger on the new alliance due to a combination of Reigns wanting to turn heel, and Heyman not being used at all in the WWE storylines while having a high-dollar contract.
Regarding last night’s title change angle at Payback, Meltzer speculated that Heyman may have had some creative influence as his fingerprints appeared to be on the match. The ring imploding and Reigns coming into the match at the end are ideas that are similar to things Heyman has done in the past. While Heyman was let go from his creative job as RAW Executive Director earlier this summer, he usually has at least some creative influence when it comes to the wrestlers that he’s working with on TV.
It will be interesting to see where WWE goes with the Heyman – Reigns alliance now. It was reported on Friday night after SmackDown that WWE has plans for Reigns, with Heyman, to be booked as the top heel on the blue brand. The Fiend is scheduled to be used as the top babyface, while Strowman will still be booked as one of the top heels on the brand.
Stay tuned for updates.