Samoa Joe is doing his thing on Monday Night Raw and WWE fans have to be happy about it. He typically always wins and he usually always looks good doing it. He works mid and upper card guys, so he’s not exactly beating jobbers, which is a good thing.
After all squash matches can be fun but they often leave fans wondering if that’s all there is. So is that happening now with Joe? Are fans wondering if this is all that WWE has for him?
It was only a matter of time until that question was asked and maybe it’s a long time coming. Samoa Joe did come in on top when he debuted on Raw alongside Triple H. Putting Seth Rollins on the shelf put Joe on the map and the WWE faithful surely felt as though The Destroyer was on the way up.
But the highlight of Joe’s run to this point was when he challenged Brock Lesnar for the Universal Championship. It was the dream match to end all dream matches and it was a spot that Joe had definitely earned.
Of the challengers that had stepped up to The Beast Incarnate in recent months, Joe was the only one that could potentially win and do something with that win. Goldberg’s return was a one-shot deal. A future WrestleMania showdown with Roman Reigns was likely in the cards for Lesnar but Reigns is already on top. Why would he need that win over Brock?
Joe however, could be elevated to great heights with a victory over Lesnar. He was battle-tested and fully capable of believably getting the job done. This would not have been a fluke or a shock. This would have been a natural progression for Samoa Joe, who had worked his way to the point that he could pin Brock Lesnar in the middle of the ring or perhaps even make him tap out.
But of course that did not happen and Joe soon fell back to being just a contender. He didn’t seem to fall out of favor though; again, he’s been dominant through the bulk of his main roster career thus far. He’s not the top guy on Raw however. He’s also not the top champ. But he could be the next Intercontinental champ.
Roman Reigns has it now but he was put on notice by Joe on the November 27 edition of Monday Night Raw. Joe and Reigns have feuded already but there’s more story to be told between them and now it finally appears as though The Destroyer will get his due.
That’s what his fans are certainly hoping for. Joe can do so much in the ring and on the mic; he’s a ready-made top guy and just needs his moment to shine. While others are working to attain that type of star power, Joe came fully prepared. He’s ready now and fans are ready for him.
But what if he doesn‘t beat Reigns? What if WWE is indeed just booking Joe as an upper card tough guy, always on the verge of doing big things in case the company wants him? Maybe it’s too soon to know for sure but if this is indeed the case, then fans definitely have a cause for
That’s because with this type of booking, Joe can disappear at any time. He’s not in a full time storyline and once his new heat with Reigns ends, he’s back to square one. He’s just there. He’s doing his thing. He’s a blip on the radar. But he’s not in a power position. It feels as though Joe is biding his time until the end comes.
If that’s true, then what is his legacy? Would fans ultimately say that his run was a disappointment? Or considering the crop of heavy hitters that currently reside on Raw, could it be said that Joe was just lost in the shuffle? The cream certainly rises but at the end of the day, Joe’s fate is not in his own hands.
But then again, AJ Styles was once in the same spot. He also seemed to fall just short of greatness as WWE apparently didn’t feel the need to promote him the way he deserved. Fans made a lot of noise about it as they were clearly not happy with his direction. But as time went on, the company did the right thing and positioned Styles as the top guy that he is.
But there are only so many top spots. What are the chances that Samoa Joe will be elevated over Roman Reigns while Seth Rollins, Dean Ambrose, Brock Lesnar, Cesaro, Sheamus, Braun Strowman, and even Finn Balor, are all competing for main event matches? Perhaps Joe should move to the blue brand if he is unable to take Reigns down.
Why not book Joe on the same night with Styles, Shinsuke Nakamura, John Cena, Jinder Mahal, Dolph Ziggler, The New Day and The Usos? Is that a better fit for him or would WWE once again just float Samoa Joe along as he’s doing now? Is that a bad thing, or should it be all or nothing for him?
Win or lose against Reigns, Samoa Joe looks good right now. He’s doing just fine. But whether or not that is enough for him, or for fans, remains to be seen.