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Wednesday, March 25, 2015

Lesnar's Re-Signing Keeps Heyman Active

The terms of Brock Lesnar's new contract aren't currently known aside from the fact that he's back for two years. Among the most burning questions are the dates he'll be working and/or appearing, which will still probably be mostly sparse.

One question that we can assume is all but answered pertains to the future of Paul Heyman, should Lesnar have left. Now that he's staying, that pretty much means Heyman stays as well.

In the past year, Heyman has been the most valuable entity on Monday Night Raw, moreso than Daniel Bryan or Dolph Ziggler or any Shield member. When Heyman appears, that generally means the powerful aura of Lesnar isn't terribly far off. In Lesnar's off weeks (of which there were/are numerous), Heyman would fill those voids by taking five to ten minutes to address the crowd with his top-level bombast, a mix of candor and salesmanship that puts to shame any other spate of dialogue on Raw. When Heyman spoke, there was a good chance you were getting the best segment of the show then and there.

Heyman at this point blows Bryan away into terms of value, because Bryan's sadly at the point where he's 'just another guy', a smiling submissive competing for a secondary title, and doing media appearances where he tries to convince anyone listening that holding the Intercontinental Title is where his energy is best driven. Laughable as it is, it's also far too meek for a man that a year ago was taking down the corporate machine en route to winning the WWE Championship at WrestleMania XXX. All of that goodwill built up with zealous and excited fans is just air being let out of the tire. Those YES chants are a little less thundering now that fans think they see the endgame of the current booking plans.

Bryan was once authentic, and he certainly could be again, but not right now. If WWE lost Lesnar, that would leave Heyman in limbo, and a fledgling product can't afford to lose the character most rooted in reality. Far be it for anyone to call Heyman 'honest', but since there's nobody that can write his promos for him, you're getting one of the few authentic voices WWE has, and it would be a shame to lose him now.

Of course, there was always the chance of a double-turn Sunday, and for Heyman to side with Reigns just as he did Big Show in 2002, because WWE obviously feels that Heyman is better served as a villain. The flip side to that is that even when Heyman tells the crowd that their sports teams and heroes and beliefs are stupid, there are still smatterings of cheers. Heyman could call one of his fans' mother a whore, and that fan may say, "Yep, could totally see her blowing a guy for cash, yep. Good point, Paul." There lies the power of Heyman-speak. The Kool-Aid has never lost its flavor.

Of course, maybe Heyman *does* go with Reigns anyhow, or maybe even Seth Rollins down the line. As long as he's there to dilute the rest of the half-baked three hours of drek, Raw won't entirely suck.

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