Charting a Path for Brock Lesnar to WrestleMania 31

Ryan DilbertWWE Lead WriterAugust 27, 2014


Brock Lesnar's journey to WrestleMania 31 will be that of a destroyer leaving smoke and ruin in his wake.

After halting Undertaker's undefeated streak and abusing John Cena at SummerSlam, expect The Beast Incarnate to be the immovable force atop WWE for months. Lesnar will swat down his next challengers and compete at only a handful of pay-per-views before Roman Reigns finally topples him in California's Levi's Stadium.

It's a path that will anoint a man clearly being primed to be the company's next top babyface.

Constructing a monster only makes sense if there is eventually a knight who benefits from chopping it down. Whether stories unfold on a big screen, across the chapters of book or in a wrestling ring, the hero doing the impossible and knocking off the seemingly unstoppable villain is a time-honored tradition.

Starting with his rematch with Cena, look for WWE to have Lesnar play that monster role throughout a lengthy world title reign.


Cena Conquered Again

Cena is set to climb in the ring with Lesnar once again, this time hoping that the German suplex count doesn't reach 16.

Night of Champions is a chance to allow Cena some redemption from his embarrassing loss at SummerSlam. He will bring that same edge and aggression that he showed against Bray Wyatt on Monday's Raw.

He'll need it.

It makes little sense for Cena to win. Building up Lesnar as a man capable of taking down an immortal and steamrolling the biggest star in the company can't just be used to tell another story of Cena overcoming the odds. There's not enough electricity in that.

Cena giving Lesnar a more competitive fight this time around, only to fail even after taking his best shot, is the more powerful narrative.

Lesnar ending Night of Champions standing over a fallen Cena with the WWE World World Heavyweight Championship gripped in his fist creates the sense that no one can dethrone Paul Heyman's client. If the man who overcomes everyone couldn't stop Lesnar, then who can?

Brock Lesnar celebrates his SummerSlam win. Will Night of Champions end the same way?
Brock Lesnar celebrates his SummerSlam win. Will Night of Champions end the same way?Credit:

Taking out WWE's top dog twice would also give him reason to step away for a short while. With no would-be giant-slayers ready, Lesnar would slip into the shadows.


A New Warrior Rises

Lesnar's part-time schedule means that WWE has to leave the world champ off a number of pay-per-views. A potential Hell in a Cell grudge match between Seth Rollins and Dean Ambrose could counterbalance Lesnar's absence.

It's a potential main event despite the lack of championship at stake.

Meanwhile, the story should be that WWE's top wrestlers are all looking to position themselves as Lesnar's next challenger. Either over several episodes of Raw or during the Hell in a Cell pay-per-view itself, the company can decide who that is via a No. 1 contender's tournament.

When Lesnar does show up, he and Heyman can scoff at the idea of any of the men in the tournament being able to stop him.

Brock Lesnar lets Paul Heyman do the trash-talking for him.
Brock Lesnar lets Paul Heyman do the trash-talking for him.Credit:

To him, it doesn't matter who wins. Their prize will just be a beatdown courtesy of The Beast Incarnate.

WWE then needs a powerful Superstar to win that tourney, someone who seems to have at least a puncher's chance of taking out Lesnar.

Sheamus, who could then be without his U.S. title, is a good fit. He's a brawler, a powerhouse and a former world champion. He offers a fresh matchup as well.

At Survivor Series, The Celtic Warrior can give Lesnar a physical title bout. Their similar smashmouth styles would mesh well.

Sheamus pounds Titus O'Neil in the chest.
Sheamus pounds Titus O'Neil in the chest.Credit:

In the end, though, Sheamus' fate would be the same as Cena's. Reddening Lesnar's chest and tagging him with right hands is not enough. He would hit Sheamus with an F-5 and extend his title reign.


The Scramble to Crown a New Champion

On the following Raw, Lesnar can shout into the mic that WWE needs to send him someone else. He has felled two of his biggest names and now needs new prey.

At this point, The Authority will be feeling that Lesnar is beyond its control. After watching Lesnar embark on a series of attacks on Raw—Randy Orton being one of several victims—Triple H would then get desperate to get the title on someone else.

The COO would then book a Ladder match between top stars at TLC: Tables, Ladders & Chairs with a title match awarded to the winner.

He'll insert his usual henchman as well as Cesaro, who will emerge as the winner. The King of Swing has shown signs of wanting to join The Authority in the past. Triple H will promise him inclusion in the group and fringe benefits galore if he can bring some order back to the WWE title.

Will Cesaro get a crack at Brock Lesnar?
Will Cesaro get a crack at Brock Lesnar?Credit:

The issue is that Cesaro would decide to reject Triple H after his victory at TLC. A newly turned babyface Cesaro would promise to beat Lesnar for personal pride and the fans, not for The Game. 

The TLC pay-per-view doesn't necessarily need Lesnar with its gimmick matches being its main attraction. That's especially true if the event features a battle to decide his next challenger.

The Royal Rumble, however, is one of the calendar's biggest highlights. WWE is not going to want it to go without a WWE title match.

That's where Cesaro comes in.

The Royal Rumble has historically been a night where WWE has gone the outside-the-box route with its title contenders. Scott Steiner battled for the world title in 2003 and Dolph Ziggler got a championship chance in 2012, for example.

Cesaro offers another bruiser for Lesnar to contend with. His past alliance with Heyman allows for a compelling subplot as well.

Cesaro, when he was a "Paul Heyman guy."
Cesaro, when he was a "Paul Heyman guy."Credit:

Lesnar, though, will withstand every uppercut and suplex Cesaro throws at him. Cesaro can look great in defeat, earning himself momentum by pushing the champ harder than Sheamus or Cena did. Lesnar has a bigger battle ahead with Reigns, the winner of the 2015 Royal Rumble.

Elimination Chamber will be another time for Lesnar to step away. 

WWE can use the show's titular match as a means to further boost Reigns. Triple H will be upset about his enemy getting to face Lesnar at WrestleMania and can lean on his executive power and force the powerhouse to fight to keep that spot by winning an Elimination Chamber match.

The hero will have then gone through a series of trials, now possessing great momentum, ready to enter the monster's den.


The Savior Arrives

Fans can already see the foundation for Lesnar vs. Reigns being built. 

Reigns has been unstoppable as well. He compelled Kane to unmask once more after outlasting him in a Last Man Standing match. He took Orton's best shots and responded with a spear and a win at SummerSlam.

He fought off Seth Rollins and Kane's next attempt to send a Superstar to the hospital via cinder blocks.

He's WWE's superhero, the action figure coming to life. His win-loss record speaks to that. Per, Reigns has a .767 winning percentage in 2014. That's not far behind Cena's .802 2014 winning percentage.

Reigns' critics may cringe at the idea of him taking home the title, but WWE is clearly behind him. 

Backstage reports point to this collision as well. According to the Wrestling Observer Newsletter (h/t Wrestle Zone), Reigns vs. Lesnar is still the match officials are discussing for WrestleMania 31.

It makes sense, then, that WWE spends the next six-plus months having both men go on parallel journeys of dominance. 

Roman Reigns, set for a WrestleMania 31 showdown with Brock Lesnar?
Roman Reigns, set for a WrestleMania 31 showdown with Brock Lesnar?Credit:

Should Reigns take out Triple H, win the Rumble and defeat five other men inside the Elimination Chamber, the audience will be convinced that he's the company's best hope of taking down The Beast.

Lesnar has to lose at some point. Everyone does.

It won't be against Cena, who doesn't need the title to be a major star. It won't be against Cesaro, Sheamus or any of the challengers that WWE sends his way. There's too little drama in his defeat coming that way.

Expect it to come on the grandest stage WWE has to offer against a man pegged as the chosen one.

Reigns will spend the next several months sharpening his sword. Lesnar will be busy delighting in demolition. At WrestleMania 31, they'll meet, the conqueror becoming the conquered.