WWE shocked the WWE Universe by placing the Universal Championship back around the waist of Brock Lesnar. A former champion with one foot out the door and an appetite only for the biggest paycheque he could muster, his last run, if nothing else, was controversial. With that in mind, why would WWE do such a thing?
Lesnar vs. Strowman was a short match and most insiders believed Strowman was a shoo-in to be named the victor. It would have been the Monster Among Men’s first title run and Lesnar was rumored to be leaving back for UFC, with no further dates scheduled. In reality, many insiders said The Beast Incarnate wouldn't be at Survivor Series because that event didn't include a Saudi-Arabia payday. Everything pointed to Strowman being the man. Alas, after a cheap shot by Baron Corbin and five F5’s, Lesnar is once again the champ and questions will remain.
There are a few theories as to what WWE was thinking when they made this call. Here are the ones we believe make the most sense.
After the match ended, it took WWE less than 10 minutes to broadcast on social media that the new champion would be heading to Survivor Series in a few weeks to take on AJ Styles. Those doubts we mentioned at the top of this article and the fact Lesnar wouldn't appear at the Thanksgiving traditional pay-per-view pushed those doubts aside with the announcement. It will be a SmackDown Live vs Raw match, the second meeting between these two.
Lesnar versus Styles makes much more sense than Strowman versus Styles does. The alternative was a babyface vs babyface bout and WWE likely deemed it too soon to go that direction. Styles vs. Lesnar II is a match people will want to see.
Setting Up Strowman vs. Corbin
There were rumors Baron Corbin was heading for a feud with Strowman. That’s clear as day now with the way WWE booked this match. Corbin cheap-shotted the big man before the match could really get underway and Strowman is not likely to take kindly to it.
Potentially WWE plans to make a group of Survivor Series teams with Strowman and Corbin as respective captains. Corbin will likely threaten Superstars with the loss of their jobs to recruit his team while Strowman may take on everyone alone to show he’s still among the strongest men in the company.
Strowman Doesn’t Need It, Lesnar Does
It’s more than a possibility WWE simply sees Strowman as a star who doesn’t need the title to be over with the audience. He’s popular no matter what his role and he remains a star regardless of whether or not he holds a title. The same can’t be said for Lesnar who is quickly losing steam.
Without the Universal Championship, Lesnar isn’t nearly as devastating as he once was. Giving him the title gives him a status as a top-tier competitor even if he’s not around to defend that championship. It’s hard to doubt him as a threat when he’s the top dog on the brand.
Saving Strowman For Wrestlemania
Perhaps WWE does intend to give Strowman the title but the idea is to make it a big event when it happens. There’s nothing bigger than Wrestlemania 35. If that’s the plan, expect the build to be big and WWE to promote the change much more than they had an opportunity to when this singles match got thrown together at the last minute.
WWE shocked a lot of people by giving Lesnar another run, especially allowing him to pin the company’s biggest star in speedy fashion. But, upon closer look, perhaps there’s some logic behind the decision.
Where things will get rally interesting is in what WWE decides to do next. Is Lesnar in for a long run? Will he be showing up more often now that he’s the champion? Did the company learn anything from his last run or is the WWE Universe in for another long tenure with a champion that’s never on WWE programming?