For weeks, Braun Strowman was making Brock Lesnar look like an underdog. Outside of two surprising squashes by Goldberg, no one in the WWE ever made Lesnar look so insignificant and at No Mercy, Lesnar had a chance to prove the doubters wrong.
Despite going into the pay-per-view the Universal Champion, only a handful of people seemed to think Lesnar would be walking out with the title. So, when he did, and in an anti-climactic fashion, many in the WWE Universe wondered if Strowman was pushed too hard for no reason or if the WWE was building for something bigger?
We're not so sure either, but an argument can be made that having Lesnar win is the wrong choice. Here are five reasons why.
5. Part-time Champ
It's an argument people have been making for a while, but it's not an argument the WWE seems to care much about because Brock Lesnar has been the Universal Champion since WrestleMania 33, and it's not looking like they plan to take the belt off of him anytime soon.
Still, now that Lesnar won, how much will the WWE Universe see him on WWE programming? When he wins, that seems to be his thing. If the WWE wants a champion that is only Raw weekly, Lesnar is not their guy. Strowman could have been, and it might have been fun watching someone try to take the title from him.
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4. Time For A Change
We discussed how Lesnar has been the Universal Champion since WrestleMania 33. That's now been more than six months and by today's WWE standards, that's a long time to have one champion. This is not to say that the length of someone's reign is the only reason to move a title from one WWE Superstar to another, but who else really had a chance?
Strowman was the first legitimate contender in some time. If he can't take it, who can? Everyone else that has come up against Lesnar has gone down and there really isn't anyone but Roman Reigns left to fight for the title if Strowman doesn't get a rematch, which he's not really entitled to because he didn't lose the title.
3. Lesnar Looks Like The Underdog "Hogan-Like" Champ
Back in the 80's and 90's, there was a very predictable pattern with the way WWE booked the Heavyweight Champion. It was usually Hulk Hogan, and for the most part, he'd come up against a new challenger who would almost always get the better of him and look like he might dethrone the unbeatable Hogan with all his Hulkamaniacs. But, Hogan would always squeak out the win. This is not the way WWE should be booking their champion now.
It would have been better to have Lesnar lose than make him look like a champion who squeaks out victories. Now he looks weaker, and so does Strowman. If Lesnar won after say 10 or 15 suplexes, and a few F5s that would have been different, but it took six and a surprisingly quick pin.
2. Stalls Strowman's Push
Braun Strowman's monster push has been one of the most exciting things in WWE programming, and that might be stalled following his decisive loss to Lesnar. This was a WWE Superstar the WWE Universe was firmly behind. If all of a sudden, he has to go to the back of the line. That would be a terrible waste of weeks of building him up only to throw him away.
That's not likey what the WWE will do, but they'll now have to work hard to show that Strowman just got overconfident or ahead of himself and got caught. He's going to have to destroy a few more people to get back to Lesnar, and we've already seen that show.
1. Strowman Deserved The Title
At some point, the WWE is going to have to put the belt around Strowman's waist. He might not need it now, but he's far too popular and far too big a star to ignore him, and there is a risk that having him lose clean upon his first attempt will overshadow his recent dominance that made him so popular.
Strowman has done everything asked of him and then some. He's made his opponents look good, he's put guys over and he's become more of a fan favorite than the WWE might have realized he could be. It might have been smart to give him the ball and let him run with it for a little while.