For the past 410 days, Roman Reigns has held the WWE’s Universal Championship. In that span, he’s successfully defended the belt against numerous legends. He’s adopted a new entrance theme song that makes him feel like the impossible-to-defeat final boss of your favorite video game. He’s appointed wrestling legend Paul Heyman as his Special Counsel. He’s formed the Bloodline alongside his cousins, Jimmy and Jey Uso. He’s become known as the Tribal Chief and the Head of the Table. Roman Reigns has done many things in those 410 days that have equated to one of the most impressive title runs that we have ever seen in the WWE. And he’s not done. At Crown Jewel, airing Thursday, Oct. 21 at 12 p.m. on Peacock, he faces one of his toughest tests yet, an angry, cut-off flannel wearing version of Brock Lesnar.
One thing is for sure though, Reigns remains unfazed, regardless of his opponent. He’s stacked two legends in Bryan Danielson and Edge on top of each other at WrestleMania 37 to pin them both at once. Just last month at Extreme Rules, he emerged victorious over Finn Balor despite him bringing back his fan-favorite “Demon” persona. Back in August at SummerSlam, he spoiled John Cena’s comeback to the ring when he pinned the all-time great for the three-count. Given Reigns’ continued dominance, it isn’t entirely surprising that he doesn’t appear shaken by his next opponent, even if Lesnar has proven to be one of the most feared professional wrestlers of all time.
“I’m better at this art form than everybody else. And I stand on that. That’s the totality of it. I’m not just talking about, ‘Oh, his spots are so good and he counters real well.’ That stuff don’t mean anything to me,” says Reigns. “When you tally it all up, nobody touches me in this business.”
At a time in pro wrestling where the landscape is constantly changing and WWE has what feels like its first legitimate competitor since the ‘90s (although Reigns would disagree) in AEW, Reigns has been a constant. For over a year, he has been hoisting the Universal championship belt over his head in victory. And that doesn’t seem like it will be changing any time soon.
Ahead of the Supersized two-and-a-half-hour episode of SmackDown airing this Friday on FS1 and next week’s Crown Jewel pay-per-view, we got a chance to catch up with Reigns over the phone to discuss testing the allegiance of Paul Heyman, why Bret Hart is his dream opponent, what he thinks of CM Punk and the rest of the AEW roster, and more. Check out the full conversation below. But first, acknowledge him.