Bleacher Report catches you up on the latest news from WWE and AEW.
WWE Booking Roman Reigns With Long-Term Plan in Mind
Triple H felt arguably his first twinge of backlash since taking over WWE creative after Clash at the Castle, with many feeling Drew McIntyre should have unseated Roman Reigns as undisputed champion.
It seems there was never any thought given to putting the strap on McIntyre.
Dave Meltzer of Wrestling Observer Radio said WWE is booking Reigns with a long-term plan in place on who will unseat him.
"Their long-term story may have made it impossible for [Drew McIntyre] to win [at Clash at the Castle]. I mean, for the night he should have won, but they’re telling long-term stories," Meltzer said. "They want Roman Reigns to be a multi-, multi-year champion. If that’s their goal, then they didn’t want to screw up their goal. They certainly could have done it, but that’s their mentality."
With Reigns not expected to wrestle at Extreme Rules and Survivor Series typically not featuring title defenses, it's increasingly likely he will be champion as we head into 2023.
That leaves Day 1 or Royal Rumble as the likely next event where we'll see where this story is headed. Cody Rhodes and The Rock have been the two opponents most-often linked to Reigns at next year's WrestleMania. If WWE can get a Reigns-Rock match, it does not need a championship; the company could use the Rumble as a way to get the strap off Reigns and then move on to the Rock storyline.
If Rock isn't medically cleared or his schedule books up, Rhodes winning his first WWE championship at WrestleMania makes sense.
Veer Mahaan Push Put on Hold
It does not appear Veer Mahaan will be the one unseating Roman Reigns.
Fightful Select reported there are no "imminent creative plans" for Mahaan, who has not appeared on television in nearly a month. Veer's last match was a squash of Beaux Keller on the Aug. 15 edition of Raw. He has not even been used on house shows since.
Vince McMahon was still in charge during the infancy of Veer's push, but it's unclear if there was ever much of a plan for it to sustain. WWE spent months running "Veer's coming" vignettes with no payoff, and he spent his brief run in the spotlight mostly crushing jobbers.
There were occasional flashes of potential on the mic, but it's clear Triple H's creative vision differs from his predecessor in the handling of Mahaan.
Sasha Banks Wants to Own Her Character
We may have gotten our first hint at what it will take to get Sasha Banks back in WWE.
The Boss spoke on the importance of owning her creations during an appearance on Ahch-To Radio.
"For me, it’s really just owning my own IP [Intellectual Property] and owning the character behind the character and really defining, who is the character that is playing the character," Banks said. "It’s really just finding yourself. When it comes to even wrestling, that’s a character that I come up with, and I portray myself, and you have your writers coming in and giving a little more details of what they see for it. It’s really when it comes to characters in your life, it’s what you see for that character because only you know how you’re going to play it, and only you know how you see the vision of that character."
WWE owns all intellectual property rights to Sasha Banks and essentially every gimmick she's used over the course of her professional wrestling career. McMahon consistently changed the established names of characters to give WWE ownership, often drawing the ire of fans. Triple H showed less of an obsession with IP during his tenure running NXT, but it's unclear if that will carry over.
Though Banks was largely an in-house developmental project, it's possible she requested ownership over her character as part of her negotiations to return. It's widely expected that she and Naomi will be back on WWE television sometime soon after walking out over frustration with their creative direction in the spring.
Listen to Ring Rust Radio for all of the hot wrestling topics. Catch the latest episode in the player below (warning: some language NSFW).