After performing on NXT from October 2019 through May 2021, Finn Bálor returned to the WWE main roster on the July 16 edition of SmackDown.
Things looked promising at first with the way Finn was inserted into the SummerSlam storyline between Roman Reigns and John Cena. But that was quickly ruined for Finn after a silly angle where John Cena stole a Universal championship match away from him by signing his name on Finn’s contract. Bálor wasn’t booked on the big stadium SummerSlam event as a result of that angle. That was a bad break for Finn, but it wasn’t actually the low point of his return to the main roster.
The low point (so far) came this past weekend at Extreme Rules, where WWE decided to give The Demon his first loss on the main roster. They did this by having Finn flop around like a fish on the ground (pictured above), resurrect from the dead, and then lose after falling off a broken top rope that may have malfunctioned due to divine intervention. Instead of considering the idea that Finn deserves a rematch due to faulty equipment, the commentary team quickly moved on to talking about Roman Reigns’ upcoming Universal championship match against Brock Lesnar at Crown Jewel on October 21 in Saudi Arabia.
In roughly two months after Bálor returned to the main roster, The Demon is no longer undefeated, and Finn has been presented as an afterthought compared to the part-timers. The latter characteristic is something that nearly all full-time performers in WWE have to deal with, but The Demon’s undefeated record is something WWE didn’t need to rush into ending. It was done just because they needed a main event for Extreme Rules, and regular Finn apparently wasn’t a big enough deal for that spot.
WWE will probably try to undo the damage by moving Bálor over to Raw in the upcoming draft. Or perhaps they believe no damage was done and they did a great job of protecting him with the wacky rope break angle. Either way, this is the kind of booking Finn is stuck with, because moving back to NXT doesn’t appear to be a good career move now that the show has been rebranded.
Is this what you envisioned would happen to Finn Bálor when he returned to SmackDown two months ago?