Drew McIntyre earned himself a world title match at WrestleMania 36 by winning the 2020 Men’s Royal Rumble. The Scottish wrestler will get his chance to become the top champion on “Monday Night Raw” when he takes on WWE Champion Brock Lesnar.

The match was supposed to happen Sunday in front of nearly 70,000 fans at Tampa’s Raymond James Stadium, possibly closing the show. The coronavirus pandemic forced WWE to film the matches for its biggest show of 2020 at the WWE Performance Center in Orlando, Florida with no fans present.

WrestleMania 36 has been split into two nights with the matches being broadcast Saturday and Sunday.

Whenever the WWE Championship Match airs, McIntyre is favored to emerge victorious. The challenger has -350 odds to defeat Lesnar at BetOnline. Lesnar has +225 odds to retain the title.

WWE has been pushing McIntyre for months. He turned babyface just a few weeks before the Royal Rumble. Delivering a Claymore to Lesnar and pinning the former UFC champ in the WrestleMania 36 main event would solidify McIntyre’s spot as one of WWE’s top stars.

But doing so in an empty arena might not have the same effect.

McIntyre seems destined to become the WWE Champion. It just might not happen at WrestleMania 36.

Just look at Roman Reigns’ WrestleMania history. The former Shield member has faced Lesnar twice in the show’s main event, favored to leave the pay-per-view as WWE’s top champion on both occasions. Reigns was defeated at WrestleMania 30 and WrestleMania 34, likely in part because the live crowd wasn’t going to give him the reception that WWE desired.

If McIntyre defeats Lesnar, he won’t receive any reception at all. That probably isn’t the way WWE wants to crown its next big babyface.

Lesnar has held the WWE Championship for more than 180 days. He’s the most dominant WWE superstar of the last several decades. There is no more meaningful win than defeating Lesnar clean in the middle of the ring.

Maybe McIntyre will become WWE Champion at SummerSlam. The first PPV when fans are back in the stands could also work.

WWE shouldn’t waste that moment in a pre-taped match in a small, empty area.

Prediction: Brock Lesnar over Drew McIntyre

Brock Lesnar
Brock Lesnar lost his WWE Championship to Roman Reigns recently at WrestleMania FAYEZ NURELDINE/AFP/Getty Images