WWE Hot Take: Why Samoa Joe Should Be the Next Big Brock Lesnar Feud

Chris Roling@@Chris_RolingFeatured ColumnistDecember 28, 2019


A feud with Samoa Joe could make the annual and current Brock Lesnar absence worthwhile.

Joe has endeared himself to fans lately thanks to his mic skills on commentary while he sits out. For those who have monitored his special career outside of WWE for pretty much any amount of time, this wasn't a surprise—he's one of the top-tier talkers in the sport, perhaps ever.

If WWE is smart, this groundswell of fan support bubbling underneath Joe's inevitable return to the ring should get put to good use in the form of a feud with Lesnar.

Because let's be honest: The first time around was a classic.

Joe and Lesnar danced briefly some time ago to amazing results. He nearly put Lesnar to sleep on a sneak attack, stood toe-to-toe with him on the mic and in the ring and even had one of the most memorable moments with Lesnar in modern times:

The gall it takes to tell Lesnar to look at him when he's talking to him isn't something fans will see often.

And as a bonus, fun footage of the sneak attack:

There's a likely small segment of fans who think Joe should have taken a top title off Lesnar during that feud. That's how good it was and how believable he made it all look—especially when it was pretty clear this was a holdover feud until Lesnar moved on to something bigger.

This time...this needs to be the something bigger.

Fans deserve an extended feud here. So do the Superstars, as Joe is clearly one of the few who vibe with Lesnar well and put on great matches as a result.

This wouldn't be another sloppy match with Cain Velasquez wherein two real fighters pretend to fight and it feels forced. It wouldn't be some silly matchup with another big name like Tyson Fury. It would be grounded in the wrestling realm, where Joe's deadliest move can remove Lesnar from the conscious world and win a promotion's top strap.

WWE would have to negotiate some interesting things in the short term to make this happen. Based on Raw lately, it's quite apparent he's going to be one of the guys clashing with the new heelish Seth Rollins and AOP.

Akam and Rezar, after all, put Joe through a table but not until after he did his usual great tough-guy act. It's a nice way, though, to get him back in the ring and doing what he normally does before Lesnar returns to regular programming and needs a feud for WrestleMania season.

Is Joe 100 percent the guy WWE brass envisioned as the next great Lesnar feud? Maybe not. But who are the other options? Rollins' rough year has him getting revived via heel work. Roman Reigns is off on the other brand and a rehash. Lots of guys who might seem good enough in time (think Drew McIntyre) have largely been off in the midcard getting lost in the brief win trading.

Some might rebuke the idea of Joe taking down Lesnar sheerly because of his age (40). The platform of a Lesnar match at 'Mania, if not an upset, might indeed be better off going to a younger star who could use the next big push. But Joe would be one heck of a compromise if it means avoiding a brutal Lesnar-Velasquez or Lesnar-Fury sort of matchup. Give the feud to a modern legend in the AJ Styles vein like Joe and run with it—everybody wins.

It's important to keep the long-term perspective in mind too. Say Joe takes the belt off Lesnar—it's suddenly back on regular television programming every week and in the hands of a final boss sort of character who can slot into the same role as Lesnar, if Lesnar actually showed up regularly.

Something like this seems destined for WrestleMania, not just a Royal Rumble stopgap. It doesn't have to be the main event there. But playing connect the dots makes it clear: Joe is the one. The feud last time these two butted heads, the talent of all involved and the way they mesh, it screams next big Lesnar feud unlike anything most could dream up right now.