Early in the evening at tonight’s (Sat., Jan. 28, 2023) Royal Rumble Premium Live Event at the Alamodome in San Antonio, Texas, Roman Reigns made it clear he wanted Sami Zayn by his side for the entire night, all the way up to and through his WWE Universal title defense against Kevin Owens. Despite proving himself time and time again, Reigns refused to trust Zayn and wanted to keep him close.
It was here that he would go through what Reigns called his “final test.”
WWE promoted it with a slick video package just before the match by calling it “the final chapter.”
How the hell would all this shake out?
A referee bump, and Reigns demanding Zayn hand him a chair and Sami seeming conflicted before eventually doing so. Owens recovered in time to hit a Stunner for an incredibly close near fall.
A short time later, Zayn pleading with Owens to just stay down. “Just end it,” he said multiple times over.
Reigns repeatedly sending KO’s head into the steps, making Sami watch him as he did it.
Finally, mercifully, a Spear in the middle of the ring and a three count, with Reigns defeating Owens to retain the WWE Universal championship.
But that wasn’t the end.
The entirety of The Bloodline hit the scene, and before allowing anything, Reigns made Zayn watch The Usos put the boots to an already finished Owens. And then they set him up in the corner with a chair on his neck and Solo Sikoa had his go at him too. Then, the handcuffs came out and Owens was bound to the top rope by both wrists.
He ate superkick after superkick after superkick. “I can’t even look, this is disgusting,” Michael Cole plainly stated.
And still Sami watched.
Reigns grabbed a chair and just as he was about to bring it crashing down on Owens’ head, Zayn got in his way.
“This is beneath you! You don’t need to do this. You’re better than that. You are.”
So Reigns handed him the chair.
“I shouldn’t do it,” Reigns said.
“You should do it.”
Zayn didn’t want to. Reigns goaded him on. “He don’t care about you! He’s dragged you down since day one! He’s an anchor. I care about you! I love you!”
Zayn took the chair and lifted it.
“Pull the trigger,” Reigns shouted.
When he didn’t, Reigns pushed him in his face.
“You think this is a game?!? This is my life!”
And then Reigns turned to yell at Owens once again.
So Sami did it.
He hit Reigns in the back with the chair.
Jey Uso was devastated.
Jimmy Uso responded with a Superkick, and a barrage of punches.
Solo Sikoa threw Jimmy off to get at Sami himself. The beating continued. Jimmy, and Solo, and Reigns were there now, going at Zayn.
But Jey wasn’t there.
He stood in the corner, his head down, unsure. When his family asked what he was doing, Jey slid down, and left the ring, slowly making his way up the long entrance aisle, his hands covering his mouth. He appeared to be in tears, or near it.
The rest of The Bloodline continued its assault on Zayn.
The Alamodome let Reigns know how they felt about it all with a loud chant.
“Fuck you, Roman.”
And then they left.
Zayn laid out in the ring, helpless. Owens still handcuffed to the ropes, equally defeated.
The Bloodline stopped to take one last look into the ring.
Fade to black.
Get complete Royal Rumble results and coverage of every match on the card right here.