If you’ve been following WWE social media this weekend, you may have picked up on the storyline that Roman Reigns will be headed to Raw this Monday and that WWE is telling everyone he’s not welcome. Technically, it’s not so much that Reigns is unwelcome, but that he’s got “commitments” now that he’s a Superstar on SmackDown Live.
WWE responded to Reigns’ tweet that he’s got unfinished business by saying:
“WWE officials have learned of Roman Reigns’ desire to appear on Monday Night Raw, but as of now, and due to his obligations as a SmackDown Live Superstar, he will not be appearing on Monday Night Raw.”
It’s pretty obvious, Reigns will be on Raw. Even more obvious is how blatant this ploy is to try and combat the low ratings Raw has been getting since the Superstar Shake-up and that they somehow believe Reigns will help.
WWE Just Doesn’t Get It
Let’s list the ways this Reigns’ development doesn’t make sense.
First, with the ratings among the lowest in the show’s history, that WWE believes Reigns will somehow change things is preposterous. At the best of times, the WWE Universe rejects the Big Dog. That he’s now going to be on Raw, won’t bring in more viewers, at least not enough to make a major dent.
Second, that WWE has consistently ignored the idea that they’ve had a Superstar Shake-up at all lessens the impact of ever having a Superstar Shake-up again. In the three weeks since the Shake-up took place, WWE has continued to move stars around, the latest being The Good Brothers this past Monday.
Third, there’s no logical reason to move Reigns when looking at the current storylines.
WWE’s Long-Term Problem
After a Superstar Shake-up that saw some of the company’s bigger names change brands and with star power like Brock Lesnar, Daniel Bryan, Ronda Rousey and others not on tv since WrestleMania 35, the company and Vince McMahon may be looking for answers. Moving Reigns is not it.
Sure, Reigns taking to Twitter and writing, “I’m back on SDLive, but I still have some business on Raw. I’ll see y’all Monday. #ProtectTheYard.” brings up questions about what exactly he means. And that Seth Rollins responded with “I got it handled over here on red, big man.” makes someone wonder what WWE has planned, but this is only a short-term fix that makes no logical storyline sense. And of course, this is WWE’s underlying problem.
WWE can’t explain Roman just “showing up” on Raw, and this is type of writing WWE has been known for over the past few weeks and months. Nothing makes sense. Fans are tired of it.
Build New Stars Vince
All Vince McMahon is looking to do here is to tease an element of surprise and give fans a reason to tune into the show. Then what? What happens next week and the week after when WWE realizes the ratings are still in the tank and Reigns is not the answer?
The problem for WWE is much bigger than Reigns showing up on Monday. Their inability to produce new stars, write interesting and captivating angles and effectively use their talent is why their ratings have dropped. And, for some reason, they’re not looking at the success of videos like Bray Wyatt’s Firefly Fun House or how viral the Jon Moxley video went last week and doing similar things.
Like Batista so eloquently put it, “Give me what I want!” is the only thing that will help WWE win this ratings battle. Roman Reigns is not it and for some reason, WWE doesn’t seem to know that.