As you’d expect from someone who’s said to be a very private person, we haven’t heard much from Roman Reigns since he announced on Oct. 22 he was leaving WWE to get treatment for a recurrence of leukemia. Reigns thanked everyone for their support, showed up at his alma mater for a big football game, and we’ll see if his rumored visit to the Tribute To The Troops taping involved filming anything for television when the special airs on USA Network tomorrow night (Dec. 20).
Other than that, though, there haven’t been any appearances or statements from Joe Anoa’i or his character.
Asked about the Big Dog in an interview conducted Monday, his friend Seth Rollins didn’t tell Iridian Fierro much. But he did say they chat regularly, and keep the conversation off WWE for the most part:
“Absolutely, I stay in touch with Roman. I talk to him, you know, once a week or so just to see how he’s doing. Mostly it’s about that. At the end of the day, he doesn’t want to worry about work. He doesn’t want to deal with that headache right now, so it’s mostly just about how he’s doing, seeing how he’s feeling and how his recovery is coming and stuff like that, so it’s nice to hear from him and every once in a while he’ll have a question how things are but, for the most part it’s two friends just keeping up with each other, making sure everyone’s doing alright.”
That’s understandable all around, even if it’s a little surprising that co-workers wouldn’t chat about their jobs - even as a potential distraction for Roman. And you imagine the temptation is there for Seth to get feedback from another locker room leader, especially considering he also told Fierro:
“I feel a lot of pressure now that Roman’s on the shelf and trying to get better to carry that load and to carry that torch...”
What Reigns is dealing with is obviously much bigger than work and career, though. And given what we know about the stress of life backstage at WWE, Seth (and maybe Roman’s loved ones) don’t want his friend dealing with “that headache right now”.