All the WWE Universe wants is engaging angles, stories and feuds. Ones that will feel good during the meat portion of its storytelling process, and the type that will have a nice closure feeling whenever the sendoff match is had. With Finn Balor stepping up to the plate to face Seth Rollins for the WWE Universal Championship, fans appear to be in the early portions of getting just that.
Some of this was highlighted on Monday night, a week after Balor secured his place in the title match by having one of the very best main roster debuts in the history of the sport.
When Balor came out on Monday night, it was for a supposed one-one-one interview with Michael Cole. The former NXT talent couldn’t get nine words out of his mouth before Crossfit Jesus came out to interrupt him. During what was only a few minute promo, both Balor and Rollins shined on the microphone in a way which led many previously non-Balor believers into supporters of this feud.
After all, not only did Rollins shine as he always tends to do, but Balor didn’t look overwhelmed. He looked like a combination of belonging alongside the WWE’s most proven main event level star and as if he has the actual potential to upset the former Shield member at SummerSlam.
That last part can’t be pointed out enough.
We, the fans, need to feel like Balor has a legit shot at beating Rollins at SummerSlam. For many of us, at least before Monday night, we felt as though the WWE was tossing the Internet Wrestling Community a bone much in the same way the company did with AJ Styles previously. That, sure, the company would give an IWC darling a main event title match, but that would be it.
Now it feels different. Moving forward it feels like we might be getting a main event feud over a main event title that we haven’t sincerely gotten in years. Two talents, on relative equal footing, battling for the opportunity to be the first ever WWE Universal Champion.
The stakes can’t get any higher. Even better, even in a theoretical Balor loss, we can be witnessing the birth of a potential mega-star in Balor if this storyline plays out in favorable ways.
We are only two weeks into the Balor push, one into the actual Balor-Rollins feud, and the possibilities are so endless that the insides of many a WWE fan’s belly is warm with excitement. We legitimately don’t know what is going to happen next. Not on the next Raw or even the next backstage promo. We are in the rare WWE situation where we might get surprised.
Does this eventually lead to the debuting of Demon Balor at SummerSlam and a legit crowning of a new era? Does Rollins further cement himself as the top-tier talent in all the WWE (a loss doesn’t change that)? Can a reformed Balor Club make an appearance?
Those are all just theoretical. The — for a lack of a better word — actuals (which isn’t a word) is that we’re consuming a feud between two guys who are two of the very best in-ring performers of the world, with each bringing something unique to the table, and it is one of the rare true heel vs face matches the WWE can put together where the crowd won’t be split 50/50 or even booing the face outright (Hi, Roman).
That’s not to say Rollins won’t have his supporters, either. Fans have grown to respect how talented he is. It’s just that — and, admittedly, this is only a week in and there’s a long way to go — this feels like the first time he has met an equal, not only in terms of in-ring abilities, but in on-screen presence.
This can fizzle out or the WWE can book it to next-level abominations, but through two weeks of making Balor a household name, and turning the main event of SummerSlam into Rollins vs Balor, the WWE Universe can’t be more excited than it already is. If it isn’t, they will be, as the WWE is giving us the angle — and everything that comes with this specific one — we have always deserved.