Reacting to B/R Community Takes on Roman Reigns, CM Punk, Danielson in AEW, More
Welcome to the Bleacher Report WWE and All Elite Wrestling mailbag.
The B/R community has always been outspoken, especially when it comes to opinions on pro wrestling and its biggest stars.
We will answer your questions and react to your hot takes about WWE, AEW and the world of pro wrestling.
A wide variety of questions about everything from specific Superstars to broader topics have been submitted. Check out what was on the minds of the B/R community this week.
Can Keith Lee Recover from Bad Booking?
"Keith Lee is being buried." (@abdulrahim1)
"Keith Lee should go back to NXT." (@fcourtney)
There were quite a few takes this week related to Keith Lee and how he has been booked on Raw since returning on the July 19 edition of Raw.
The general consensus is that WWE is burying The Limitless One, and while I think it's too early to say his character will never recover, I can't help but agree that the company has handled his return as poorly as it could have.
Lee losing his return match was bad enough, but then WWE booked him to lose again the following week. It's hard to imagine there was some grand plan behind all of this.
He doesn't have to win every single match to be a top star, but having him lose two in a row has clearly affected how fans see him.
There is one way I could see this turning around. If Lee loses again, WWE could turn him heel by having him freak out and destroy everyone at ringside. It wouldn't fix everything, but it would be a good start.
Should AJ Styles Return to Individual Action?
"AJ Styles needs to get back to being a singles competitor. WWE has to make Omos look dominant, so no teams can beat him up. It’s always Styles who takes the beating." (@jamesparrett)
From what I have heard, AJ Styles feels like he is at a point where he is more valuable helping other people get over. It's one of the reasons why he is working with Omos.
Unfortunately, being the smaller tag team partner always ensures you will take the majority of the punishment from the opposing team. We've seen it a million times.
Styles is helping Omos because he is able to go in and have a great five-minute exchange before Omos comes in and cleans house for a minute or two. On top of that, The Phenomenal One is also carrying the team when it comes to promos.
I see Styles and Omos as being like Shawn Michaels and Diesel. Both guys can benefit from the partnership before they eventually break up and have an epic feud.
If Omos had to do everything on his own, he probably wouldn't even be out of NXT yet.
Is There Superhero Fatigue in Pro Wrestling?
"WWE is a joke. They have a superhero champion." (@Yuddyfromtheoak)
These two sentences seem related, but in actuality, Nikki A.S.H. is not the reason why so many people see WWE as a joke these days.
Yes, the company has had a lot of issues, especially over the past year or two, but acting like one gimmick is even close to being responsible for the current product is a stretch.
Nikki is one of the few people in WWE who can pull something like this off because she is so well-liked by most of the WWE Universe. Most people just want to see her succeed regardless of how it happens.
It has been a long time since WWE was the pop-culture phenomenon it used to be, but it still has some redeeming qualities.
NXT and SmackDown have consistently been better than Raw. NXT UK is also quality programming but not enough people take the time to watch it every week, so it never catches on.
Comedic wrestlers and Superstars with gimmicks meant to appeal to a younger crowd are nothing new. In fact, they are staples of WWE going back decades. Nikki isn't even the first superhero to grace the ring.
CM Punk and Bryan Danielson
"Who will have a greater impact in AEW: CM Punk or Bryan Danielson?" (@DantheMan82)
This is a great question and one I have been thinking about ever since those rumors started circulating. Both men have their upsides, but I think it comes down to short-term vs. long-term impact.
Because CM Punk hasn't wrestled in years, he will have the greater impact initially. More people will be curious to see if he can still go in the ring at this point in his career.
With Bryan Danielson, he would likely work more matches than Punk, so his impact will be felt more over time. With Punk, it's his big debut that will get headlines. It's more about the potential dream matches Danielson could have with the AEW roster.
Punk seems like he would be used more for special attractions, while Danielson would fall somewhere between a part-time and full-time schedule.
Since we just saw Bryan at WrestleMania 37 in April, people haven't had as much time to miss him. His debut will get a huge pop, but Punk will get more mainstream media coverage.
Roman Reigns Is a Star
"Roman Reigns is in one of the greatest runs ever. Eventually, they need to do Reigns vs. Seth Rollins." (@IssaWinner44)
The Tribal Chief has worked his butt off since he returned after taking time away at the start of the pandemic, and he has been on fire ever since.
It's hard to think of anyone in recent memory who has had a run as good as the one he is having. Every single segment Roman Reigns is in ends up being one of the best parts of the show.
However, we have to give some credit to Paul Heyman and The Usos. If Reigns didn't have them by his side, his character might not have the same kind of impact.
Right now, The Tribal Chief is the top dog in WWE, and nobody else comes close. Bobby Lashley is an awesome WWE champion, but he hasn't left the same kind of mark as Reigns has in recent months.
As far as Seth Rollins is concerned, WWE is building up to that feud. They will probably end up headlining Survivor Series. If WWE really wants to drag it out, it might be the Royal Rumble in January 2022.
"We deserve a Cesaro vs. Sami Zayn rivalry for the Intercontinental Championship." (@KobePeytonTyson)
Cesaro and Zayn had some Match of the Year candidates when they feuded in NXT. It would be great to see them revisit that rivalry on SmackDown. They've had matches on the main roster, but a long-term feud would allow them to put on some clinics.
"Letting Murphy go is going to haunt WWE in the long run." (@MeloFan7)
Maybe, but WWE has a ton of guys who can do what Murphy does, and I say that as a huge fan of what he does. If anyone reading this didn't see the Street Fight he had with Mustafa Ali on 205 Live, drop everything and go watch it right now.
"AEW has really been on the rise, especially with all of the recent acquisitions. It's really an exciting time to be an AEW fan." (@Sean_Lutez)
If the Bryan and Punk rumors come to fruition, AEW has to make sure it capitalizes on that momentum and exposure. Other recent signings such as Malakai Black will help strengthen the roster, too.
"Who will AEW build up to eventually beat Britt Baker for the title?" (@Trevor10)
The top picks right now would have to be Thunder Rosa, Kris Statlander, Big Swole and Jade Cargill. Serena Deeb would be another great option. I am sure I am alone on this, but I would love to see Rebel be the one to take the belt from Baker.
"John Cena should win the Universal Championship with help from The Rock." (@theiconpal3)
I have an alternate proposal. What if Vin Diesel helps Cena win the title and then The Rock returns to team up with Reigns for a tag team match? It would be the Toretto brothers vs. the Hobbs brothers. The branding and marketing possibilities are endless. Jason Statham could be the special guest referee since Deckard Shaw is neutral.
"It's kind of a problem that all of AEW's champions are heels." (@cody5s)
Is it? The storylines behind the feuds are what keep wrestling going. If anything, having heels holding all the titles sets up AEW to give fans a string of memorable babyface victories in the future.