Details On Why Kevin Owens Was Turned Heel On Smackdown
This past Tuesday night on Smackdown, Kevin Owens turned heel on the New Day by attacking Kofi Kingston and powerbombing Xavier Woods into the ring apron, ending a brief run of being an honorary member of the group as “The Big O.” According to The Wrestling Observer Newsletter, there were a number of reasons behind the decision to turn Owens heel.
The original plan for Owens was to have him be the #2 babyface on the Smackdown brand behind Roman Reigns. He was supposed to be the “guy next door” type who ate junk food, had the same problems as everyone else, had kids but could still kick ass. He was even given the Stone Cold Stunner, considered “the ultimate modern babyface finisher.” This is also a move that WWE reportedly tested Becky Lynch out with at house shows.
Owens’ heel turn was due to the recent rise of Kofi Kingston and the injury to Daniel Bryan at Wrestlemania. Originally, Bryan was going to get a rematch with Kingston at Money in the Bank. WWE needed a new opponent. The choices were Randy Orton or bringing over someone from RAW, but names like Drew McIntyre, Baron Corbin and Samoa Joe all reportedly have plans already. Rowan was also considered, but it was believed that he was “lacking the charisma on his own to be top heel”. A few days after Wrestlemania, the decision was made to put Owens in that spot.