Fantasy Booking – Part 1 – Universal Title

So last week’s podcast got me thinking about Fantasy Booking. I made a point to skip the Universal Title during the conversation as it was simply an understood that we were headed for the Spear vs Spear Wrestlemania match that we are getting, pitting Roman Reigns against Royal Rumble winner Edge.

But the more I’ve thought about it, there are a lot of really interesting scenarios that can play out here. Now, there’s no getting around the set Wrestlemania match that is only not going to happen if we get an injury to either of the two competitors, or the possibility that we end up with a fatal four-way match that will include the likes of Daniel Bryan and possibly Kevin Owens, just based on how things have played out these last few weeks and months. So I’m going to deviate just a bit from the conversation and book long-form. Now if you’re a WWE fan, you might have forgotten what long-form storytelling is, mostly because you don’t seem to ever see it play out in front of you very often. One example from recent memory would be the Triple H – Seth Rollins feud, and the epic “Am I Savage” video package that came with it.

I know I’ve been spreading the gospel of The Head of the Table for weeks now. I’m not changing my stance on that. This version of Roman Reigns is peak heel in all its glory. It’s everything they wanted to get out of Brock but Brock was just sort of going through the motions. Roman puts on a show when he gets in the ring, and now they’ve created an aura around him that has done the one thing Superman booking never could….it made him interesting.

That said, I’m trying to go a little longer form with the plan for this belt, so we’re going to fantasy book an Edge win at Wrestlemania. The comeback story, the battered and bruised veteran fought back from retirement and once again made his childhood dream of winning a title at Wrestlemania come true.

That’s a moment.

Edge will get a cheering crowd, albeit a small one. He’ll get to tear up on camera and probably have Beth and the kids run out to the ring for his moment.

Smackdown will open with a video recapping that moment in its entirety, because let’s face it, it’s a WWE show and that’s pretty well how every episode starts.

Edge will be in the ring when the video ends, and he’ll describe that feeling. The ultimate redemption that he’s been chasing. He’ll go back through all the work, all the surgery, all the hope and defeat and everything that got him back on top of….


Enter the Prince.

“Edge, Edge. Congratulations. You are the Universal Champion. Retired due to injuries 10 years ago, came back valiantly at the Royal Rumble in Houston and then fought your way back to the very top of the mountain at Wrestlemania. I know a thing or two about injuries, and having to fight back from them, so I know how hard you worked to be standing here in this moment.

But the thing is, a few weeks back you came on my show and poked around about my NXT Championship. And while you may have decided to go after a champion you thought you could beat in Roman Reigns, you got me thinking. Now I know I’ve been gone from Smackdown Live for a bit, but in case any of you around here have forgotten, I was the first Universal Champion. And if anyone is in need of a reminder, that’s also a championship that I never lost.”

Roman will be owed a contractual rematch, which Heyman will discuss with Adam Pierce and his hands will be tied, so we’re going to get Roman-Edge II at Money in the Bank, but that seems to lend itself pretty nicely to my narrative.

Edge feels challenged by Balor, so when Roman gets the rematch it messes up Edge’s opportunity to defeat that challenge. Edge informs Balor that when he retains the title at Money in the Bank, Balor will be the first in line because he knows what it feels like to have to hand the belt away without losing it, and he respects Finn. Edge vs Finn Balor, win at MitB pending (and successfully done), is set for Backlash.

Edge meets Finn Balor at Backlash, but the match is interrupted by an angry Roman Reigns and Jey Uso who beat the hell out of both of them. This is going to set up a tag team match at Extreme Rules. Caveat, Finn only gets another shot at the belt if he teams up with Edge and they are able to beat Roman and Uso in an Extreme Rules match.

They are successful, but just barely, with Edge getting the pinfall.

The next Friday night on Smackdown, Edge calls out Balor.

“You will get your rematch for the Universal Title, and you’ll get it at Summerslam. But after last night, I’ve got to tell you, I don’t see the fire I once saw in you. I don’t see the fighter. I don’t see a man capable of taking this Universal Championship off me.”

“Don’t worry about my fire, Edge, because when we get to Summerslam, I’ll be something else entirely.”

The Demon Finn Balor takes the Universal Championship at Summerslam.

The Demon has been absent for quite a while, but to win the belt at Summerslam again, just as he did it the first time, this stuff writes itself.

So there’s my fantasy booking for the Universal Championship through the August PPV event.