Reigns Talks WWE Career Goals; Triple H vs. AJ Styles; Rollins on Rock vs. Austin

Mike Chiari@@mikechiariFeatured Columnist IVApril 7, 2021

Bleacher Report catches you up on the latest news from the WWE Universe.

 

Reigns on How Much Longer He Wants to Wrestle

Universal champion Roman Reigns is on the verge of one of the biggest matches of his career at WrestleMania 37, where he will face Edge and Daniel Bryan in a Triple Threat match, but it seems as though there will be many huge bouts to come for The Tribal Chief.

In an interview with Jason Duaine Hahn of People, Reigns discussed several topics, including his training regimen with bodybuilder Neil Hill.

Reigns also revealed what he told Hill when they first met:

"I told Neil when we first met over a year ago that I want to grind it out for the next 15 years. I want to maximize my potential for the next 15 years. And I told him, 'This is who I am, as a performer, as a talent, but I also am a father, I'm a husband. I wear all these different hats.' And man, we've been on an unbelievable journey thus far."

At 35 years of age, Reigns has already put together a Hall of Fame career in WWE. He is a three-time WWE champion, two-time Universal champion and about to headline WrestleMania for the fifth time.

Although Reigns has been on WWE's roster since 2012, he is unquestionably doing the best individual work of his career right now as a dominant heel with his "Head of the Table" persona.

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Reigns had many detractors throughout his career, but even some of his biggest critics would be hard-pressed to find a significant issue with what Reigns has done over the past several months in terms of in-ring work, mic work and character work.

Wrestling for another 15 years would put Reigns at 50 years old, which is ambitious but far from impossible.

Chris Jericho is still performing at a high level in AEW at 50 years old and held the AEW World Championship as recently as last year.

Meanwhile, one of Reigns' WrestleMania opponents is Edge, who looks to be in the best shape of his life at 47.

Reigns has found the proverbial "secret sauce," and if he continues performing at the level he is now, most wrestling fans would welcome seeing The Tribal Chief for 15 more years.

 

Triple H Says Styles 'Pestered' Him for WrestleMania Match

WWE legend and NXT founder Triple H confirmed this week that AJ Styles has been asking for a match against him at WrestleMania.

During the NXT TakeOver: Stand & Deliver media call (h/t WrestlingInc.com's Jason Ounpraseuth), Triple H divulged how his conversations with Styles have gone:

"He pestered me with it every time I saw him. He would ask me about it and asked me about my schedule. I've said it before, getting ready WrestleMania is a different thing, and the older you get, the harder it gets. Doing this once a year, once every couple of years, especially now, is not an easy task. You try to stay in the best shape you can, but that's not WrestleMania shape, and it's a different thing. So when he very first came to me, I said, 'Man, I'm not going to tell you. To be honest with you, personally, I’d love to work with you. At this point, you can carry me to something.' I'd love it, and so the personal side of it, the athlete side of it to the performer side of it would love nothing more.

"The reality of it is, I am not going to have the bandwidth or the availability schedule-wise to be able to pull that off, and then he would come to me every week or every other week whenever I would see him and say, 'How's that bandwidth coming? You gonna be able to make this happen?' And I would say, 'It's not gonna happen.' I'm flattered by that. I really am. I'm humbled by it, but I wish I had the bandwidth to do it, and I'm not saying I won't do it in the coming year if it’s right and everybody believes that it's what should be done. I'm at a point where to me, the in-ring stuff is bonus."

Triple H hasn't had a true match since wrestling on WWE's tour of Japan in June 2019, and he has not competed at WrestleMania since beating Batista in Batista's retirement match at WrestleMania 35 two years ago.

A big reason for that is the fact that he is so focused on running NXT and ensuring its success on USA Network.

The Game is not scheduled for this year's WrestleMania, either, and there is little doubt that his fans would have loved to have seen him mix it up with The Phenomenal One on The Grandest Stage of Them All.

Triple H said that he remains open to the idea of a match against Styles at some point if he has the time to commit to it, but he also made it clear that he wants to be able to get in in-ring shape so he doesn't embarrass himself.

Triple H is clearly in the twilight of his career at 51, but it is rare that he disappoints, and his experience and savvy coupled with Styles' skill level would likely be more than enough to produce a great match.

At the least, WWE could get creative, much like it did last year when Styles faced The Undertaker in a Boneyard Match. It was widely regarded as the match of the night and one of the greatest matches in WrestleMania history.

Triple H and Styles could potentially pull off something similar, and Triple H's comments make it seem like there is hope for them to clash in the ring one day.

Rollins Says Austin Was Bigger Than The Rock

Dwayne "The Rock" Johnson is one of the biggest movie stars in the world, but in the opinion of Seth Rollins, he didn't have as big of an impact on WWE as "Stone Cold" Steve Austin.

During an interview with Out of Character (h/t Felix Upton of Ringside News), Rollins discussed some of the biggest legends in WWE history and expressed his belief that Austin was more influential than The Rock:

"Rock's a fair argument, but I would argue that Steve's impact on the WWE is bigger than Rock's, especially during his time here because Rock had a pretty short run. He was really on top for not very long, and then he jettisoned out and now he's the biggest movie star in the business.

"So not taking anything away Dwayne, from DJ, from my guy, but Austin was the bigger fan favorite in the late '90s and really ushered in the Attitude Era, I would say, more so than anybody. And Rock was a big part of the Attitude Era in the back end of it, but wasn't necessarily the catalyst for it like Steve was. Steve was the catalyst for business being as good as it was, and he was the guy that was selling out the arenas and the t-shirts with the Austin 3:16 and all that. So yeah, that's a tough one."

It is difficult to argue with Rollins' assessment given that Austin was the face of professional wrestling for a few years and the ultimate foil to WWE Chairman Vince McMahon.

If not for the rivalry between Austin and McMahon in the late 1990s and early 2000s, it is possible WWE would have lost the Monday Night War to WCW.

The Rock was great in his own right, but he developed into a top star a bit later than Austin and was arguably at his best as a heel working alongside McMahon.

Austin was the quintessential antihero who every wrestling fan loved to cheer for, and he presided over perhaps the most successful period in the history of wrestling.

The Rock is a bigger mainstream star than Austin in the present day, but when it comes to the world of pro wrestling, perhaps nobody has ever been a bigger deal than Austin was during the Attitude Era.

    

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