Undertaker, Roman Reigns and the WrestleMania 34 Implications from WWE Raw 25

Ryan Dilbert@@ryandilbertWWE Lead WriterJanuary 23, 2018

Credit: WWE.com

Amid all the waves of nostalgia at WWE Raw 25, a number of images and moments foreshadowed what we may see at WrestleMania 34.

Undertaker's cryptic speech in the Manhattan Center hinted at his departure. The end of Roman Reigns' Intercontinental Championship reign clears a path to WrestleMania's main event. And Monday's Raw offered other teases potentially related to The Show of Shows.

Fans expecting an emphatic start down the road to WrestleMania had to leave the star-studded show disappointed. 

Undertaker didn't call out John Cena. No big WrestleMania angles were spelled out. Instead, WWE went a more subtle, open-ended route.

Undertaker exits after his Raw 25 promo.
Undertaker exits after his Raw 25 promo.Credit: WWE.com

The audience was left to guess what's to come for The Deadman and Cena, while The Big Dog's fate feels certain even if the company isn't coming out and saying it.

     

Roman Reigns

It doesn't take a vivid imagination to foresee Reigns stepping up to Brock Lesnar at The Showcase of the Immortals and battling the big man for the Universal Championship. It's a main event that has long been presumed.

Reigns has headlined three straight WrestleManias. Lesnar continues to fend off beastly challengers, seemingly setting up for a megamatch with a big star at WWE's version of the Super Bowl.

That showdown is now more probable after Raw 25.

Reigns fell to The Miz on Monday night, dropping the Intercontinental Championship. No longer being a midcard champ frees him up for bigger things. 

WrestleView.com laid out some possible WrestleMania scenarios for The Big Dog after his loss:

A champion vs. champion scenario always felt unlikely. WWE has only done that at WrestleMania with the IC and the world titles once. But that's no longer an issue. 

        

The Miz

Before The Miz dethroned Reigns, in fact, before he even got into the ring, a moment stood out. During his entrance, The A-Lister stared down SmackDown general Daniel Bryan. The two rivals seethed in silence.

It looked like something from a promo poster for a title fight.

Bryan and The Miz have long issues. The IC champ famously berated his boss when he was on SmackDown. He stole some of Bryan's signature moves. But nothing has come of it.

That's largely because Bryan isn't medically cleared to compete. 

So why tease something between them again? Why continue to focus on their issues? The same kinds of questions can be asked about whatever WWE has been cooking up for the slow-burn story of Bryan and Shane McMahon's infighting. 

Perhaps The Miz will get involved in this angle somehow. If WWE is going to go with some sort of tag match with Bryan in someone's corner, having the IC champ involved would increase the level of star power.

        

John Cena

Cena cut Elias' New York concert short. The 16-time world champ challenged The Drifter to a fight, and things didn't turn out so well for him.

Elias nailed Cena with a low blow and a guitar shot to leave him facedown on the mat.

While that was clearly a sign that these two will be feuding as the Royal Rumble unfolds, there's little chance that same clash is what's on Cena's schedule come WrestleMania. As good as Elias has been during a breakout year, WWE won't view him as good enough to cross paths with Cena on such a big stage.

Elias' fate is likely a warm-up to whatever's planned for the powerhouse at The Show of Shows.

Unfortunately, one of Cena's best WrestleMania options is hurt. Samoa Joe has a foot injury that threatens to keep him off the card.

And as for Cena vs. The Deadman, the door isn't closed on that.

      

Undertaker

Undertaker didn't announce that he would enter the Rumble. He didn't offer one last duel before he rode off into the sunset. What he said, though, was a bit tough to decipher.

During The Phenom's Raw 25 appearance, he looked back at his career and talked of his old foes resting in peace.

One had to wonder if that was, in fact, a retirement speech. PWTorch's Jeff Vandrew Jr. wrote: "I interpreted this promo to mean that the Undertaker is finished and won't be at WrestleMania this year. His facial expression when leaving the ring seemed to back up this interpretation."

But for an icon of Undertaker's caliber, one would think WWE would make a bigger deal of his farewell.

There wouldn't be so much uncertainty about what he was saying. The announcers would play up his goodbye. It feels as if WWE is looking to make folks talk by being ambiguous.

The Deadman isn't officially done, and neither is a WrestleMania clash with Cena.

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