Roman Reigns vs. Riddle announced

Jun 10, 2022 - by Staff

Roman Reigns will defend the Undisputed WWE Universal Title on next week’s SmackDown from Minneapolis.

Tonight’s SmackDown on FOX was headlined by Riddle defeating Sami Zayn in singles action, with Paul Heyman on commentary. Per the stipulation, Riddle was to be banned from the blue brand if Sami won, but since Riddle won, he has earned a title match with Reigns on next Friday’s SmackDown.

It was recently reported that WWE had plans to give away the Riddle vs. Reigns title match on free TV, and that was confirmed tonight as Riddle vs. Reigns is official for next week’s main event. After tonight’s win by Riddle, he taunted Heyman from the ring until Undisputed WWE Tag Team Champions The Usos attacked him from behind. The Usos laid Riddle out but he came right back and beat them up with a kendo stick. SmackDown went off the air with Riddle yelling a warning into the camera, telling The Tribal Chief he’s coming for the title.

This will be Reigns’ first TV title defense since defeating Brock Lesnar to unify the WWE Title and the WWE Universal Title during Night Two of WrestleMania 38 on April 3.

As we’ve noted, WWE originally had plans for Riddle vs. Reigns to take place at Money In the Bank on July 3 from Las Vegas, but that plan changed when Money In the Bank was no longer a stadium event after it was moved from Allegiant Stadium to the MGM Grand Garden Arena. It was recently reported that WWE changed plans for Riddle vs. Reigns and were planning to give it away on free TV, either RAW or SmackDown, and that was made official tonight. It’s still expected that Randy Orton vs. Reigns will take place on July 31 at WWE SummerSlam in Nashville, while Drew McIntyre vs. Reigns will headline WWE Clash at The Castle on September 3 from Cardiff.

Reigns was originally advertised for tonight’s SmackDown from the Raising Cane’s River Center in Baton Rouge, but he was pulled from the listing some time between Thursday afternoon and Friday morning.

Reigns is working a lighter schedule these days, and has not wrestled since defeating McIntyre at a WWE live event in Cedar Rapids, Iowa on May 22. His last TV match came at WrestleMania Backlash on May 8 as The Bloodline defeated McIntyre, Riddle and Orton in six-man action. Reigns did recently appear on TV to help The Usos’ defeat RK-Bro to become the inaugural Undisputed WWE Tag Team Champions on the May 20 SmackDown, but he’s been taking advantage of the lighter schedule this summer.

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