Hello! This is my series called The Book Club where I take current talent and storylines and try to book the most interesting paths for them going forward. To get a better idea, you can read my plans for Dakota Kai and Kofi Kingston. This installment of The Book Club revolves around our guy, Roman Reigns.
As you all know, Roman Reigns is supposed to clash with Brock Lesnar for the Universal Championship again at SummerSlam. I know it feels monotonous but something amazing happened last Monday. They’ve finally managed to make Brock so unlikable that we heard “We want Roman” chants near the end of the show. It felt like watching a child birth. You may not have wanted to look but it was kind of beautiful in a way. Also, throughout the show there were plenty of seeds planted that hinted at a split between Lesnar and Paul Heyman. This led to social media giving their input on who should be the next client for Paul. We’ll get to that in a second.
There’s a good chance Roman is finally going to take the belt off of Brock. The fans are tired of the belt being held hostage and Brock wants to go to the UFC. It would actually be ridiculous if it doesn’t happen. If it happens then Paul needs to cost Brock the match. Heyman is tired of his client being uncooperative and decides to take action. Brock doesn’t lose cleanly which is probably what Vince wants anyway and it gives them a reason to separate. After the loss, Brock will have a look of anger and disbelief as Paul exits with a sinister smile down the ramp. This will lead everyone to believe that Roman is Heyman’s new guy. Well, not exactly…
Monday Night Raw
It would be the first thing on everyone’s mind so the show needs to open with the clip of the Summerslam main event and what transpired. The clip fades out then Roman’s music hits to a mixed reaction like it always does. Reigns comes out alone and cuts a promo on what happened. He’ll explain that he didn’t ask for Heyman’s help and that Brock brought it upon himself. In fact, he should have been declared the new champion back in Saudi Arabia anyway. He clearly has a chip on his shoulder but still wants to be the champion that shows up every week. Reigns finishes talking then leaves. No sign of Heyman. Before Raw cuts to a commercial, a graphic pops up advertising the main event: the Seth Rollins Intercontinental Open Challenge is back. Of course that means that Seth would have to beat Dolph for the belt the night before. Ads for the main event will surface throughout the next 2.5 hours like they normally do.
The Main Event of Raw
Seth’s music hits to a big pop. “Burn it down” is in full effect. Women are screaming. Men are crying. Their crossfit messiah is back. Seth opens with an uplifting promo and issues the challenge. Drew McIntyre’s music hits. McIntyre appears at the ramp but then Dolph Ziggler attacks Seth from behind. Drew runs down the ramp and helps Ziggler with the assault. The beatdown starts to get serious so Roman Reigns comes to Seth’s aide. Seth is knocked out so it’s still a two-on-one fight. Drew and Dolph have the upper hand on Roman. Things are looking bleak but then Dean Ambrose’s music hits as he makes his long-awaited return from injury. He has a chair in hand and he’s ready to fight. The fans in the front row have broken into hot flashes. This is the best day of their lives. The Shield is BACK. Dean’s run-in turns the tide and him and Roman are able to fight off McIntyre and Ziggler. The three Shield brothers are now all back on their feet as Drew and Dolph make their way back up the entrance ramp.
It looks like the show is over but as Seth has his attention fixed at the entrance ramp, Dean Ambrose uses the chair he brought to the ring and hits Seth in the back with it. He hands Roman the chair and he takes a swing of his own. Sound familiar? Seth finally feels the weight of his actions from 4 years ago. Roman and Dean take turns with their shots on Seth. Rollins is motionless in the middle of the ring as Roman and Dean stand above him. The crowd is silent. It’s at this moment we hear a voice on an unseen microphone. “LADIES AND GENTLEMEN”, the voice rings out. “My name is Paul Heyman. And I am the new advocate for Roman Reigns and Dean Ambrose.” Paul makes his way to the ring and the three of them stand over the unconscious body of Seth Rollins. A new faction is born. Raw fades to black. A new episode of Chrisley Knows Best appears.
Molding three storylines into a single overarching one was difficult to think about but that’s also something I like about it. This was mostly supposed to revolve around Seth as a babyface but Dolph and Drew also have beef with Roman and Dean now so the story could go in a variety of directions. Dean could take the IC title off of Seth, they could have their rematch for the belt inside Hell in a Cell in September. It’ll be like their HIAC match from 4 years ago except the roles will now be reversed. While that is going on, Drew could feud with Roman for the Universal Title. The opposite could also work. Dean wins the IC belt, Seth moves onto Roman, then Drew turns his attention to Dean.
- Roman and Dean finally get their change of character
- Seth is already a strong babyface so the roles can be easily switched
- McIntyre and Rollins get a main event push
- Heyman gets to lead a faction rather than having a lone client
- It tells a story with continuity
- It gives Raw that change of pace we can finally sink our teeth into
At this point, I’ll let the reader use their imagination for what’s best. Perhaps I’m missing something and you guys see an opportunity for something more. A triple threat match with Roman, Seth and Drew for the Universal belt could also work. That would allow Dolph to go after Dean’s new IC belt. The options are endless with six of the top guys at the center of the show.
Greg DeMarco’s Three Stars Of The Night: WWE Raw (5/20/19)
Big night on Raw — who stood out?
WWE Raw returned stateside this week, and we got ourselves a new championship. Who stood out?
The Third Star for WWE Raw: Paul Heyman
Paul Heyman knows how to deliver, and he delivered big time during Raw. He made the show feel like a big deal, and it did. He made both champions feel important, but put Brock Lesnar over in the process. Lesnar is so much more comfortable with Paul Heyman around, and the job done to make this briefcase situation feel unique was really solidified by Paul Heyman. Plus, his line about Rollins sitting through 7 hours of WrestleMania waiting for his girlfriend to main event the show he’s always dreamed of main eventing was clutch.
Elisa looks great in her Chairshot gear.
You can, too!
Be like Elisa and get yours at:
The Second Star: The IIconics
Billie Kay and Peyton Royce really are national treasures. America, Australia, it doesn’t matter. They are the best, and they’ve crafted characters that don’t need to win or lose, they just need to perform their act. That’s what it takes in WWE, regardless of what we want it to be. Their promo during A Moment Of Bliss (full of people perfectly playing their characters, by the way), was outstanding. Hats off to both ladies for getting themselves to this place.
Honorable Mention: Alexa Bliss, Nikki Cross, Lacey Evans, Becky Lynch, Roman Reigns, Seth Rollins, Kofi Kingston, the entire 24/7 crew, The Usos, The Revival, Baron Corbin (yup), Bobby Lashley (I miss Lio), Drew McIntyre, and Shane McMahon
So many great performances tonight, and I am positive I’m leaving deserving folks out.
The First Star for WWE Raw: The Miz
The Miz is on fire right now, and it comes at a time where both world champions are babyfaces. He’s world champion caliber, and needs something to sink his teeth into if the issue with Shane truly is done. Drew McIntyre is a fine option, but I really want a top flight program for Miz. Maybe he’s the guy to elevate Drew? I’m not sure. I don’t feel like we turn Miz, but the best options for him (to me) are AJ Styles and Seth Rollins.
In hockey, a game’s “Three Stars Of The Night” represent the top three performers of the night. For more clarification, I defer to this Pittsburgh Gazette explanation:
“The tradition dates to the 1936-37 season, when Imperial Oil became the principal sponsor of Hockey Night in Canada radio broadcasts and was seeking a way to promote one of its products, Three Star gasoline. The idea of doing so by selecting the top three performers in a particular game purportedly came from a Canadian advertising agency.
Many clubs do recognize the player with the most three-star selections with an award or trophy, usually in conjunction with a corporate sponsorship, at the end of the season (or sometimes, each month). All six Canadian franchises, for example, have an affiliation with a well-known brewery.
The NHL keeps track of its own Three Stars Of The Night selections, but that is done on a league-wide basis. The league employs a system that awards 30 points to a first star, 20 to a second star and 10 to a third – a running total can be found on the league’s website – but it does not present an award based on them.”
In hockey tradition, the first star represents the best of the three, but all three are considered to be receiving a high honor.
7 Best Candidates To Win New Japan Best Of The Super Juniors 26
Who is the front runner?
Abe takes a look at the New Japan Best of the Super Juniors tournament and who is on pace to pick up the overall win.
New Japan Pro Wrestling’s Best of the Super Juniors tournament kicked off just last week and plenty of quality wrestling has already taken place. For the first time ever, twenty total men make up the tournament field. That means a few more sleeper candidates could potentially sneak their way into the finals.
Best Chance of Winning The New Japan Best Of The Super Juniors
At the time of this being written, Takagi is still undefeated since making his debut in NJPW. That includes the matches he’s already competed in during this year’s tournament. I don’t believe they’ll pull the trigger on him going the whole tournament without a loss but it’s definitely something to monitor. He’s been an incredible addition to Los Ingobernables de Japan as well as to the company as a whole.
Takagi has already taken shots at current IWGP Junior Heavyweight Champion, Dragon Lee for overlooking the field and only thinking about impending return of Hiromu Takahashi. Dragon Lee and Shingo are the favorites in their block. Takagi’s reason for winning the block could be that Lee was too focused on the future.
After winning the IWGP Junior Heavyweight Championship in Madison Square Garden, there is nobody in the tournament with more momentum. The current champion winning the tournament is very uncommon but there is already a story in place as I mentioned. If the current champion wins the entire BOSJ tournament, he will get to select who challenges him for the championship at Dominion. Hiromu Takahashi is the man he wont stop talking about. Almost a year ago, Dragon Lee was the guy that put his biggest rival on the shelf. Hiromu had to vacate the title as a result of the injury suffered in that match. If Takahashi is cleared to compete, there is no better person to accept the challenge.
Who Else Has A Chance?
He hasn’t won the tournament in three years and is competing with the heavyweights more and more. Among the current field, Ospreay almost certainly has the most high-profile matches under his belt. He’s the clear betting favorite to make it to the finals in his block. If there’s anything that’ll stop him, it’s that NJPW may already be trying to transition him into a heavyweight.
Ishimori made it to the finals of the BOSJ tournament last year but only finished as the runner-up. He was also the most recent IWGP Junior Heavyweight Champion. Since his official rebranding as Bullet Club’s “Bone Soldier” last year, he’s maintained a spot near the top of the junior division. If they want to continue his recently-formed feud with Dragon Lee, the opportunity is right there.
The newest member of the NJPW roster is in a similar position to the one Taiji Ishimori was in last year. El Phantasmo was introduced as the newest member of the Bullet Club mere days before BOSJ. The aforementioned Ishimori did actually end up going all the finals and Phantasmo is off to a 3-0 start this year. The only man in the B Block that’s a real threat to his path there is Will Ospreay but that’s going to be a tough ask.
Most fans think of him as a comedy wrestler but if you’ve seen him in longer, more competitive matches, you know that he’s one of the most talented guys New Japan has. It’s rare to find someone that can balance entertainment with in-ring skill the way he does. Taguchi is a two-time Junior Heavyweight Champion, former BOSJ winner, leader of his own faction, and one of the veterans of the locker room. It sounds strange but I wouldn’t put my money on Ospreay or Phantasmo as long as Taguchi is hovering near the top of the standings. He’s my dark horse in this year’s tournament.
This definitely wont happen but he is worth mentioning. SHO isn’t going to win the tournament as long as he’s attached to YOH and Rocky Romero as a part of Roppongi 3K. However, with three matches in, SHO has already wrestled the two longest and best matches of the tournament. He’s only 1-2 so far but that could make things more interesting. Watching him storm back and go on a serious winning streak would be something amazing to see.