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WWE screwed up by not having Undertaker interfere with Roman Reigns

Monday’s Rude Awakening looks at an alternative end to Reigns vs. Strowman, Goldberg’s Universal title win, and more from Fastlane.

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Undertaker and Roman Reigns are likely facing off at WrestleMania 33. The Royal Rumble match hinted at as much, and putting Reigns up against Braun Strowman at Fastlane, the pay-per-view before Mania, only furthered that idea, as it gave Reigns the most significant challenge the RAW roster could provide leading up to a match against The Dead Man. On this week’s RAW, rumor is Undertaker is showing up to make a feud with Reigns official. The fact this is happening on Monday instead of on Sunday at Fastlane is puzzling, though, especially given what we know of these characters and the work WWE had put in to this point already.

Braun Strowman is supposed to be an unstoppable force, one who even manhandled Roman Reigns with ease in the lead-in to Fastlane. Now, though, we’ve seen Reigns defeat the top heel challenger on RAW’s roster clean, and did so during a B-show in between the Royal Rumble and WrestleMania. That’s short-sighted, especially when Taker easily could have interfered in the match, costing Reigns a victory or forcing a disqualification, leaving the question of Roman vs. Strowman unanswered while giving Reigns a clear, purposeful direction for Mania. It wouldn’t have been out of character for Taker, either, given the months he spent punching Brock Lesnar in the dick just a couple of feuds ago, and the fact he owes Roman for throwing him out of the Rumble match from behind.

Instead, we likely get Undertaker showing up after the moment that would have made the most sense for him to do so. Strowman now has a loss to Reigns well before a major event like SummerSlam where it would have been most effective once revisited. Reigns is so overprotected that RAW can’t even bother implying that Strowman might have had a chance to defeat him any longer than they already have, so instead they just let Reigns try all his big moves a second time and succeed on those attempts. The Mania match is set either way, but the shortsighted way they got to it by having Strowman take an L now due to hubris isn’t going to do any of these three any favors. Mick Foley wonders why SmackDown gets love RAW does not: illogical payoffs like this one are a good place to start finding the answers.

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