The physical appearance of Paul Heyman was a topic of conversation at Fastlane during the match between the Bloodline against John Cena and LA Knight, with announcers Michael Cole, Corey Graves, and guest commentator Pat McAfee each having something to say on the matter.
It began with Cole filling McAfee in on some of what he’s missed during his time away from WWE. Of Heyman’s appearance, Cole said:
“Roman Reigns, who is now celebrating day number 1,133 as the Undisputed Champion, he hasn’t been around since SummerSlam. And if you look at Paul Heyman, Paul looks like he’s aged 20 years since Roman Reigns hasn’t been around.”
McAfee agreed that Heyman was looking a bit rough, and the conversation popped up a few more times with mentions of Heyman’s noticeably all-white hair, which still had traces of color in it one night before on SmackDown.
Indeed, Heyman has become more disheveled following Reigns’ sabbatical after SummerSlam, with the typically smooth-shaven Wise Man appearing on-screen with days-old stubble at times. And during his recent diplomatic talks with Rhea Ripley regarding the Bloodline and Judgment Day working together, Heyman said of himself, “I haven’t been myself lately.”
Since SummerSlam, Heyman has had to deal with Jimmy Uso attempting to squeeze his way back into the good graces of the Tribal Chief after renouncing him and the Bloodline months earlier. Heyman has also had his hands full containing Uso, who has openly questioned Reigns’ authority. Furthermore, Heyman has had to concern himself with LA Knight, who is quickly emerging as a future challenger for Reigns after a series of face-to-face encounters between Heyman and Knight.
But with the Head of the Table rarely at the table, more pressure and stress has fallen on Heyman, and as was noted at Fastlane, it’s beginning to show in his physical presence, which appears to be by design. And it may suggest that Heyman’s television character may be reaching a personal crisis. If so, what does that mean for his relationship with Roman Reigns and Reigns’ future as the Undisputed WWE Champion?
In addressing Knight on the Oct. 6 episode of SmackDown, Heyman crowed about having “a reputation for decade after decade of always spotting the next big thing in this industry.”
It may have been a throwaway line, but it’s worth noting that Heyman is heading to NXT for a one-off appearance in Bron Breakker’s corner as Breakker faces Carmelo Hayes, who will have John Cena in his corner.
Bron Breakker is a second-generation superstar and former NXT Champion who many consider the future of WWE. Is Breakker the next big thing? Perhaps. But most importantly, he doesn’t carry the baggage of family drama like the Bloodline.
That alone might motivate Paul Heyman to change more than his hair color.