The Rock And Roman Reigns’ Bloodline Story May Need A Key Change Because Of Another Character’s Popularity

 The Rock at WrestleMania 40.
The Rock at WrestleMania 40.

Neither The Rock nor Roman Reigns is appearing on WWE programming right now. Both men are taking a post-WrestleMania break and will likely be gone for the next few months. That doesn’t mean Triple H and the other writers have forgotten about them, however. They’ve been moving puzzle pieces around the board and even introducing new characters in order to set the table for their shared storyline when they come back. At this point, the basic trajectory of where they want to go is pretty clear, but one character’s exploding popularity may force a pivot.

When I say Jey Uso is white hot right now, I mean he is arguably one of the most popular characters on the entire freakin’ roster. His entrance at Backlash France was probably the best we’ll see the entire year, and there’s video going around of his theme music being played during the Cleveland Cavaliers NBA playoff game. Everytime he talks, fans scream YEET like they’re doing the WHAT chant for a prime Stone Cold Steve Austin. Most performers go their entire careers without ever connecting with audiences the way he is right now, which is fantastic for him but creates an interesting dilemma for the Bloodline story.

Now, you’re probably thinking, how could having a guy super over with the crowd be a problem? Well, it all comes down to balance. I’m not in the writers room at WWE, but it’s pretty obvious the goal here is to eventually get to The Rock and Roman Reigns in a ‘Mania main event. All involved have admitted that was the original WrestleMania 40 plan before fans revolted and wouldn’t stop chanting #WeWantCody, and that’s clearly where the on-screen story feels like it’s going. Jey Uso left The Bloodline. Jimmy Uso was kicked out. Paul Heyman looks terrified on a weekly basis. In their place, we now have Solo Sikoa, Tama Tonga and Tonga Loa, all of whom are being packaged as vindictive enforcers. Down the line, they’ll almost certainly side with The Rock with Roman bringing back together the original Bloodline of Jimmy and Jey Uso and Paul Heyman.

But in order for that storyline to work, there needs to be perceived balance on both sides. Right now, Jey Uso is a legitimate threat to win a World Championship. I’m not saying he’s Roman Reigns or The Rock or Cody Rhodes or CM Punk or Drew McIntyre, but he’s right there on that next level. I predicted he’d lose his World Heavyweight Championship match to Damian Priest at Backlash France, which he did, but during the match, he felt like he belonged on that level. The crowd would have lost their minds if he would have pulled off the surprise win, and there’s a legitimate chance he could get more popular moving forward.

Jey Uso on WWE SmackDown
Jey Uso on WWE SmackDown

Now, if this were the Vince McMahon era, WWE would probably intentionally sabotage his momentum. You can point to a few times in which the crowd got someone over and WWE recalibrated their plans and pushed them, but you can point to a lot more times in which WWE put that rising performer in losing situations to protect their preferred characters. I don’t think Triple H is going to do that. I think he’s smart enough to recognize someone being over is an opportunity, not a problem, but for this Bloodline story to really work, The Rock is going to need someone on his side who is as over as Jey Uso.

That doesn’t mean the person needs to be a babyface character. Whoever it is will almost certainly be a villain and rightfully so to make the storyline work, but fans need to buy that whoever it is could beat Jey Uso in a straight up match. Maybe that’s Solo Sikoa. Maybe that’s Tama Tonga. Maybe that’s a debuting Jacob Fatu. I don’t know what the answer is, but right now, your average WWE fan doesn’t see any of those guys on the same level of Jey Uso. So, WWE needs to put in the work to build one of them up. Maybe they need a mid-card title run. Maybe they need to go on a winning streak where they eviscerate a mid-card guy every week on television. I don’t know what it is, but one of them needs an aura and a serious winning streak.

At some point, we’ll see Jey Uso and Jimmy Uso get back together. They’re one of the greatest tag teams in WWE history, and fans will be really stoked to see them reunite and go on another run. If I had to guess, I would say that was the original plan here. Probably in a few months, we’d see them join forces and enter into a feud with Tama Tonga and Tonga Loa with each being the official tag team for their dueling Bloodlines, but that doesn’t work for me right now, Uce.

Jey Uso is too hot for tag team action, and he’s too hot to be a supporting piece for Roman Reigns. He needs to see how high he can rise as a singles performer, and WWE needs to pivot to fit him into this coming Bloodline story without putting a ceiling on his development. That’s likely going to mean building an equal force on the other side who can draw some real hot. It’ll take a lot of work, but as Sami Zayn proved, when you really elevate The Bloodline side characters, the payoff can be enormous.