Roman Reigns, WWE
Roman Reigns holds aloft the undisputed WWE Universal championship after defeating Cody Rhodes in the main event of WrestleMania 39 Night 2 on April 2, 2023. WWE


  • Roman Reigns retaining his titles at WrestleMania 39 split fans down the middle
  • Jey Uso has been the underlying protagonist of The Bloodline's three-year-plus storyline
  • WWE's creative team will need to convince fans that their WrestleMania gamble was correct

WrestleMania 39 came and went with Roman Reigns still the undisputed WWE Universal champion at the end of the main event.

The moment was there for Cody Rhodes with 80,000-plus fans in attendance.

Rhodes defeating the big bad "Tribal Chief" was the story fans wanted to see, but WWE's creative team, led by chief content officer Triple H, decided to pass up on the opportunity which had fans split down the middle on social media.

"The American Nightmare" standing tall at the conclusion of WrestleMania was the idyllic end for most as it signaled the start of the end for the entire Bloodline faction while putting over Rhodes as the new star.

However, a smaller part of the fanbase agreed with Reigns barely fending off Rhodes thanks to the help of Solo Sikoa and recently dethroned tag team champs The Usos for a few good reasons.

The most resounding sentiment among that minority is that The Bloodline's fall must not come from an external force, but from the inside–namely Jey Uso.

Uso and Reigns carried a big chunk of the load throughout WWE's Thunderdome era at the height of the global pandemic, with many convinced that The Bloodline's story is that of Reigns.

It makes sense on multiple levels as Reigns finally ascended to being the universally accepted face of the company after WWE's many failed previous attempts and he was putting on excellent performances on the microphone as a heel.

In that same vein, many would point to Uso as the true star of the story.

Jey Uso, Roman Reigns, WWE
Jey Uso delivers a splash onto WWE Universal Champion Roman Reigns in the main event of Clash of Champions on September 27, 2020. WWE

At Clash of Champions 2020, Uso entered the first-ever singles championship match of his career against his real-life cousin as he challenged Reigns for the mantle but lost after twin brother Jimmy Uso came for the save as Reigns was beating down on him.

The rematch at the following pay-per-view, Hell in a Cell, was an "I Quit" match inside the titular structure and would again see Reigns humble Uso by locking his brother in a guillotine choke, forcing him to say "I quit."

Reigns, having Paul Heyman by his side since the start of his heel run, would go on to manipulate the brothers into becoming bodyguards under the guise of doing what was best for their legendary pro wrestling Anoa'i family–hence forming The Bloodline.

Throughout the faction's run, The Usos would run interference for Reigns in many matches and post-match beatdowns to send a message that the group would not be trifled with.

The younger of the twins, Jey, would almost always be blamed if anything unfavorable would happen–effectively breaking his psyche and making him bend to every whim in fear of getting berated or beaten down again.

To Reigns' credit, he has been playing the role of master manipulator perfectly as he was also able to get Jimmy Uso on his side after weeks of back-and-forth about Reigns' true motives.

With the twins fully buying into his influence, the addition of Sami Zayn in mid-2022 did wonders for the group as it put another wrinkle into their story.

Outside of kayfabe, Zayn breathed new life into it as their dynamic shifted from all-serious heels to fan-favorite heels that had the occasional comedic spots to bring more personality into the group.

Uso was initially hesitant about Zayn's inclusion into the group as he was not a full-fledged member of the family, but developed a bond over time with the "Honorary Uce."

Zayn was subsequently ousted from the group in the form of a Bloodline beatdown when he decided not to partake in the post-match attack of Kevin Owens at the end of the 2023 Royal Rumble main event match against Reigns.

He was the only one not to partake in it as he had felt betrayed by his inaction and subsequently left the ring.

Zayn tried to convince him on the February 10 episode of SmackDown that Reigns had sunk his claws way too deep into him, with Uso deciding to stay by Reigns' side despite a touching moment with Zayn.

Sami Zayn, Roman Reigns, WWE
Sami Zayn turns on The Bloodline by hitting Roman Reigns with a steel chair in the back after the main event of the 2023 Royal Rumble on January 28, 2023. WWE

While Uso's personal story has been a B-plot to that of Reigns' run with the undisputed title, WWE has been subtly hinting that the dissolution of The Bloodline begins with Uso.

How WWE does it remains up in the air since the creative team has shown a penchant for including zigs where zags should be and vice versa, making this nearly three-year tale of success built upon the foundation of Reigns' manipulation one of the best in the industry has seen in years.

In that vein, sacrificing Rhodes' WrestleMania moment, and that of Zayn's at the Elimination Chamber pay-per-view in mid-February, to complete the story of Uso's rise to "Main Event Jey" makes sense.

Many believe that they missed a massive moment by not crowning Rhodes this past weekend, but Uso putting an end to Reigns' run atop the company may be WWE's response to long-standing complaints of their inability to create a long-term story.

They could have Sikoa turning on the family first which allows for a short program to take place on a secondary pay-per-view to extend the story further with the eventual turn of Jimmy and Jey Uso happening sometime down the road at a major event—potentially WrestleMania if they play their cards right.

There are a lot of ways how WWE handles the story and fans will be closely monitoring it from here on out.

The controversial ending to WrestleMania 39 will continue to dominate social media in the short term, which gives Triple H and his creative team the unenviable task of finding a way to make Uso a credible threat to dethroning Reigns.

Their task began as soon as the "Showcase of the Immortals" ended with Reigns retaining and only time will tell whether they made the right choice.

Jey Uso, Roman Reigns, WWE
Roman Reigns (left) and Jey Uso (right) in a face-off during the latter's challenge for the WWE Universal Championship at Clash of Champions on September 27, 2020. WWE