2019-04-08 by W.M.
Roman Reigns Defeats Drew McIntyre Via Spear at WWE WrestleMania 2019
Photo credit: WWE.com.
In his first singles match since his leukemia entered remission, Roman Reigns defeated Drew McIntyre at WrestleMania 35 on Sunday.
McIntyre was a game opponent but not good enough to beat The Big Dog. The result was academic after Reigns landed his trademark Superman Punch and followed up with a Spear.
#TheBigDog @WWERomanReigns is back in the win column where he BELONGS! #WrestleMania https://t.co/4gJgg8L7zm
Reigns announced in October he had leukemia, which forced him to relinquish the Universal Championship. At that time, it seemed highly unlikely he would make it back in time to be part of The Showcase of the Immortals.
In February, though, he appeared on Raw and announced he was in remission. Reigns got physical that night and made his in-ring return at Fastlane on March 10 when he reformed The Shield with Seth Rollins and Dean Ambrose to face McIntyre, Baron Corbin and Bobby Lashley.
Reigns looked good in that Shield victory, but McIntyre made it a point to target him in the following weeks and claimed The Big Dog wasn’t the same wrestler he once was.
The Scottish Psychopath attacked Reigns on numerous occasions and left him battered, which called into question whether the former universal champion would be able to match up with McIntyre on The Grandest Stage of Them All.
Ambrose didn’t take kindly to McIntyre’s actions and challenged him to multiple hardcore-style matches on Raw. The Scot defeated The Lunatic Fringe in a Falls Count Anywhere match and then beat him again in a Last Man Standing bout to gain considerable momentum entering WrestleMania.
Reigns found himself in a unique situation ahead of The Show of Shows since he was being presented as the underdog rather than dominant Superstar he was often framed as prior to his leukemia diagnosis.
Also, he had a great deal of fan support, which was something that eluded him in recent years. For the first time in recent memory, it seemed as though the crowd was pulling for him on The Grandest Stage of Them All.
McIntyre was an ideal first singles opponent for Reigns since his size and physicality made it believable that he could get the better of The Big Dog for long stretches, which can’t be said for most other Superstars on the roster.
Also, The Scottish Psychopath has been one of the most dominant Superstars on Raw for the past year, which is a label Reigns is used to owning.
Sunday’s match represented a huge test for Reigns in terms of showing he is capable of performing at a high level so soon after returning and that he could keep up with one of WWE’s best overall Superstars.
The Big Dog was up to the challenge, and after producing a feel-good moment by beating McIntyre, he may soon be in line to get back in the world title scene and reclaim his place as the face of WWE.
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