The stage is set (for now) for WWE Battleground on July 24 when WWE World Heavyweight Champion Dean Ambrose defends his title in a triple threat match against Seth Rollins and Roman Reigns.
The build for that dream match will have to be done without Roman Reigns as WWE announced last week that Reigns would be suspended for 30 days for violation of the Wellness Policy.
With Reigns out of the picture, Ambrose and Rollins won’t have any problem setting the stage for the main event in July.
As for Roman Reigns, it’s a chance to turn a negative into a positive (no pun intended).
For as long as Reigns has been a singles competitor, WWE has tried to make him the next top babyface and to this day it’s yielded mixed results, where depending on his opponent, Reigns has actually garnered more boos than cheers.
Those boos are likely to get even louder when he returns from his suspension.
I apologize to my family, friends and fans for my mistake in violating WWE’s wellness policy. No excuses. I own it.
— Roman Reigns (@WWERomanReigns) June 21, 2016
Why not give the WWE Universe a reason to boo him?
Reigns isn’t likely to get the title back anytime soon but his quest to regain the title will continue. Whether it’s at the conclusion of Battleground or sometime during Raw the night after, Reigns should attack and decimate Dean Ambrose. Reigns has an opportunity to embrace the hate and use it to fuel a run as a legit heel.
We’ve seen a similar situation work to the benefit of a guy WWE fans might be familiar with.
And as backwards as it sounds, a run as a heel is just what Reigns needs to get the WWE Universe back in his corner, something that hasn’t happened since his days with The Shield.
WWE has tried everything to get the fans on his side but Reigns has been met with resistance each time out.
That won’t change when Reigns returns at Battleground.
And there isn’t a narrative beyond Battleground that will get the majority of fans to change their stance on Reigns.
With Seth Rollins and AJ Styles still getting cheered despite being heels, Roman Reigns can be the superstar WWE can lean on to generate the type of reaction it wants from a heel.
Roman Reigns can still be “The Guy” when he returns from suspension.
He would also be “The Heel” and a very good one at that.