Nearly a year after Roman Reigns was booed out of the Wells Fargo Center in Philadelphia for winning the Royal Rumble, the former Shield member was showered with cheers as he won the WWE World Heavyweight Championship on “Monday Night Raw.” Reigns defeated Sheamus in a rematch of their title match at TLC on Sunday, doing what he failed to do just 24 hours prior.
Reigns was granted the match earlier in the night by Vince McMahon, but the CEO said the challenger would be fired if he could not win the title. He overcame interference from Rusev, Alberto Del Rio and Mr. McMahon himself, finally winning the championship and getting over with the crowd all at once.
It looked like Reigns had the match won when he hit Sheamus with a Superman Punch, but McMahon pulled the referee out of the ring and didn’t allow him to hit the three-count. Eventually, a bloodied Reigns took out McMahon with a Superman Punch, followed by a Spear to Sheamus for the victory.
WWE has pushed Reigns as the next big babyface since The Shield broke up in the summer of 2014, but his struggles on the mic and WWE’s poor creative direction have made him unpopular with a large segment of the fans. That began to change on Sunday night, when following a loss in his WWE World Heavyweight Championship Match with Sheamus, Reigns took out several of the company’s top heels, including Triple H.
Reigns actually won the title at Survivor Series a few weeks ago, but he held the belt for just five minutes and 15 seconds. Sheamus cashed in his Money in the Bank briefcase for a shot at the championship, and he held the belt until Monday night.
Now, the question becomes where does Reigns goes from here. It’s almost certain that he’ll have a match with Triple H, but that could come at the Royal Rumble or WrestleMania 32. A returning John Cena or Brock Lesnar could also challenge Reigns for WWE’s No.1 championship.