Stephanie McMahon decreed there had to be a winner in the Chris Jericho vs. Roman Reigns’ United States title match she booked for Raw tonight (Jan. 2). To cover for losing the champion’s advantage, the Big Dog at least knew Jericho’s best friend - and the man Roman will face for the Universal title at Royal Rumble later this month - was banned from ringside thanks to an earlier match (roughly the 70,000th iteration of either Seth Rollins or Reigns vs. either Kevin Owens or Y2J we’ve seen on Raw in the last few months) where KO lost by disqualification to the Architect.
None of it mattered. He didn’t even need Owens banned - everything is just an obstacle for the Big Dog to overcome.
Including Jericho taking a page out of the late, great Eddie Guerrero’s playbook. The Ayatollah of Rock ‘n’ Rolla tried to lie, cheat and steal his way to the one title which has alluded him in his Hall of Fame career when he tossed the belt to Roman and acted like he’d been hit with it. A disqualification would have resulted in a title change, under Steph’s rules. Unfortunately, referee John Cone didn’t see it and wouldn’t call for the bell.
After Jericho also failed to send Roman head-first into the turnbuckle he’d exposed, a Spear ended the match, just like it has pretty much every Reigns defense of the red, white and blue strap.