One of the biggest stories in the WWE over the last year has been Roman Reigns’ Universal Championship reign. After years of being booed because of how heavily pushed he was, Reigns developed his new character in 2020 known as the ‘Tribal Chief’ and it’s been earning praise from fans who previously wished he’d get off of the television. Fast forward to today and Reigns has held the WWE Universal Championship for 320 days and counting.
As with any lengthy championship reign, people are wondering who’ll be the one to dethrone Reigns. After all, it has to happen one day. Well, BetOnline has released odds on who’ll be the WWE Universal Champion once 2021 comes to an end. At -250 odds, the sportsbook is favoring Reigns to keep his championship into a new calendar year.
It shouldn’t be that surprising considering how well-received the Tribal Chief’s championship reign has been so far. Long title runs can get boring, however, he’s managed to freshen it up by defeating challengers such as Edge, Daniel Bryan, Rey Mysterio and everyone else who’s stepped in his path. Now that his cousins — Jimmy and Jey Uso — won the WWE SmackDown Tag Team Championships last week, it’s looking like the Samoans are going to run the company for the foreseeable future.
Considering how Reigns is rumored to be facing Dwayne ‘The Rock’ Johnson — also his cousin — at next year’s WrestleMania, all signs point to the Tribal Chief’s reign continuing.
WWE Universal Championship Odds: Who’ll Be Champion to Close Out 2021?
Odds via BetOnline as of Thursday, July 22
- Roman Reigns (-250)
- Big E (+250)
- John Cena (+500)
- Seth Rollins (+500)
- Edge (+750)
- Kevin Owens (+1400)
- Cesaro (+1600)
- Daniel Bryan (+1600)
- Jey Uso (+1600)
- Karrion Kross (+1600)
- Shinsuke Nakamura (+1600)
- Apollo Crews (+2000)
- The Rock (+2000)
- Sami Zayn (+4000)
Is the Big E Era Approaching?
At least weekend’s Money in the Bank pay-per-view, Big E outlasted several other superstars to win the men’s Money in the Bank briefcase. Not only that, but he made history by being the first Black superstar to accomplish the feat. Now, he can demand a championship match whenever he wants, which means he could cash in on whoever holds the WWE Universal Championship.
There’s no denying Big E’s personality. He’s arguably one of the most entertaining superstars on the roster and has the charisma to be a world champion one day. Considering how he’s already had on-screen interactions with Reigns’ manager, Paul Heyman, it seems like the seeds have been planted for a future match between Big E and the current Universal Champion. Since Money in the Bank cash-ins are typically successful, there’s a good chance (+250) that E could end 2021 as a world champion for the first time in his career.
Cena is Back… But for How Long?
Money in the Bank was clearly an exciting pay-per-view, however, few moments were as jaw-dropping as when John Cena (+900) made his triumphant return. The 16-time WWE world champion had been working on Hollywood projects since his last match at WrestleMania 36. While rumors circulated about a possible return, that didn’t stop wrestling fans from losing their minds when he made a surprise return last weekend to interrupt Reigns’ victory celebration.
Cena confirmed on the next night that he’s back for Reigns’ WWE Universal Championship and the two are set to face off at SummerSlam in Las Vegas, Nevada next month. However, even if he beats Reigns, will Cena hold the title into 2022?
It’s tough to say. Judging by the look of things, it would appear that Cena will take another break from WWE after his SummerSlam match because he’ll still have movies and television shows to work on. Holding a championship for the last four or so months of 2021 without defending it regularly would leave a bad taste in fans’ mouths. Of course, Cena could also return towards the end of the year and win the Universal Championship, but that seems unlikely.