Chris Jericho Believes He Could Make Crowds Love Roman Reigns


Few conversations about WWE and their talent inspire greater debate than the topic of Roman Reigns and why audiences keep booing him even as WWE keeps pushing him as a top babyface. Since he surprised everyone by losing to Brock Lesnar at WrestleMania 34, the volume of opinions about what should be done have only increased.

The rematch to that WrestleMania main event happens this Friday at the Greatest Royal Rumble in Saudi Arabia. That show also features Chris Jericho, who’s been taking time off from WWE to tour with his band Fozzy. On his tour bus, he gave an interview to Chris Van Vliet, in which Jericho offers his veteran opinion about the Roman Reigns problem.

He’s like a modern day John Cena. For years, fans just booed Cena because they think it’s the cool thing to do. They’re not paying any attention to what he’s really doing. And that’s what Roman is now. They just see Roman and they start booing because it’s the in thing rather than just shutting up and watching this guy for what he is, which is a great performer. And that’ll come, you know. Obviously, maybe if he turned heel, but if he turned heel, all the people that booed him would start cheering him, you know what I mean? And so I think it’s just a matter of time, staying the course. He needs some good, good heels to work with, heels that want to be heels, or can be heels.

Like a guy like Samoa Joe — I mean, he’s a big, tough ass kicker who’s a great promo. He looks tough. What’s to hate? What’s the heel about Samoa Joe? I’m not saying that in a bad way but dude, I loved Samoa Joe before I ever met him because I just like — that guy, he kicks people’s asses. I like that. It’s like Brock Lesnar — how can you ever cast Brock Lesnar as a heel? He’s a big, giant, ugly guy who beats the hell out of guys and wins all the time. What’s to hate about that?

I may disagree about the relative likability of Samoa Joe and Brock Lesnar — let’s be honest, Joe has more charisma in one thick calf than Brock has in his entire body — but Jericho makes a good point about how athletic strongman heels might not be the best sort to get Roman over. Naturally, Jericho also has opinions on who could:

Honestly, if it was me as a heel, I could get it over. Maybe Miz, like those type of heels. I don’t know if people would buy The Miz in that place, though. But you need some kind of a real cry baby cowardly heel against Roman Reigns. I had an idea that I wanted to do, that I pitched to Vince. I wanted to throw a fireball in his eyes and blind him. The old school Memphis idea, yeah. But we never did it. But something like that, maybe, would help.

Jericho goes on to claim that his fireball-to-the-eyes idea didn’t happen only because of larger changes in booking, not because Vince McMahon thought that temporarily blinding Roman with fire was a bad idea. It’s hard to imagine that sort of storyline happening in modern WWE, but when Jericho inevitably returns for another run with the company, I certainly wouldn’t object to seeing him have a feud with Reigns, just to see how it goes.