Brock Lesnar vs Roman Reigns
WWE World Heavyweight Championship Match – WrestleMania 31 (2015)
Coming to terms with being a middle-aged man – edging ever closer to the big 4-0 – hasn’t been made easier by people questioning why I still watch wrestling. But this match is a great example of why.
WWE writers have always been great purveyors of reaping what they sow when it comes to the storylines, and the build to this match to this match was no exception. With Lesnar being completely dominant and unbeatable in the many months leading up to the match, it fell to Reigns – recently betrayed by his former Shield teammate and Money In The Bank contract-holder Seth Rollins – to be the hero that WWE wanted. The only problem was that the fans weren’t warming to Reigns at all.
Constantly booed throughout the match, the only time Reigns got a cheer was when he was being thrown around the ring by the Champion. But Lesnar’s early confidence was soon questioned when he was “busted wide open” courtesy of the ring post, and it wasn’t long before the fortunes of the match swung between the two parties, eventually culminating in Lesnar hitting an F-5 on Reigns. But he was too damaged to take advantage and pin.
Cue Mr Money In The Bank, Seth Rollins, running down and cash-in his contract and steal the title. The fans loved it; the undefeated Lesnar had lost his belt without being pinned, and Rollins had once again got one over on his former friend Reigns, which obviously delighted the fans.
In 25 minutes, the writers had tied in six months’ worth of storytelling to one of the greatest twists in WWE history and no one saw it coming. This is why I personally still watch and love wrestling. Yes, it’s predetermined, and yes, they don’t really punch each other, but there aren’t many dramas with better or more consistent storylines that have spanned the time that WWE has been on our screens. And if you disagree, I’ll see you in the ring at WrestleMania 35.
John Webber @John_Webber