SPOTLIGHTED PODCAST ALERT (YOUR ARTICLE BEGINS A FEW INCHES DOWN)...
The final sit-down interview of the year on WWE’s website featured Michael Cole talking to new WWE World Hvt. champion Roman Reigns, who said his goal for the new year is to defend the WWE Title at WrestleMania 32.
Cole did most of the talking during the brief interview, which started with Cole asking Reigns about the reaction at the 2015 Royal Rumble when he won the Rumble and was “booed out of the place.”
“That night made me stronger. It pushed me. It pissed me off,” Reigns said. “It’s a different feeling to be embarrassed in front of thousands of people, but it just motivated me every single night. It made me want to get better on a whole ‘nother level. And I did. It’s not easy earning the respect of every crowd, every single night, trying to turn them. That’s what I’ve done; that’s what I’ve worked to do every single night, every single week. If they’re not with me in the beginning, let us go 30 minutes in and they’ll respect what I’m doing out there.”
The interview shifted to Reigns’s fight for respect in storyline context of not winning the WWE Title at WrestleMania 31, not winning Money in the Bank because of Bray Wyatt, winning the WWE Title at Survivor Series but being cashed in on by Sheamus, and finally winning the WWE Title after the TLC PPV.
Now, Reigns is battling for respect with the McMahon Family. Reigns talked about having to fight Mr. McMahon with his mind, not his fists, to overcome the latest obstacle.
Asked how he will retain the WWE Title against Sheamus on Monday’s Raw with McMahon as special referee, Reigns paused, thought it over for eight seconds, and replied, “Do what I always do – overcome.”