This Sunday Shane McMahon will walk into a Hell in a Cell match with Kevin Owens. It will be the third time he’s wrestled since his shock return in the build-up to WrestleMania 32. Both of those previous matches took place at a WrestleMania and yet, it’s possible this is the most important one yet. The Undertaker and AJ Styles didn’t need the rub of a McMahon to establish themselves, while Kevin Owens (despite having been around for a while) feels like he does at the moment. He’s been floundering since he moved to SmackDown.
Entering into this feud seems to have finally given him a purpose. It’s allowed him to go into full-blown destroyer mode. Headbutting pensioners and bringing up Shane’s kids is peak Kevin Owens. It’s what he does best. He’s a fantastic heel who flourishes when he has no morals. Which, conveniently, is exactly what SmackDown – and the company as a whole – needs.
Sadly, though, there is a flaw to this. It’s a flaw that comes around whenever a McMahon steps into a WWE ring. They don’t like being made to look weak. However, for this to work, Shane needs to look weak. He can’t go out there and outwrestle Kevin Owens like he did in that embarrassing ‘Mania match with AJ Styles. He can’t go out and start dishing out those awful punches and having Owens bump around for him like a maniac. He has to go out there and take the bumps. He has to get beaten up.
Does anyone think that will happen? Does anyone seriously believe that a McMahon is going to play enhancement talent? Don’t get me wrong, Kevin Owens will probably win on Sunday. Shane tends to lose and it’s never taking a pinfall that the McMahons have an issue with. The problem is who looks better coming out the other end. I don’t think Owens is going to look like a monster while he does it. It will be because Shane makes a mistake. It will be because he jumps off something really tall most likely.
WWE lacks convincing heels. On Raw, they have Bray Wyatt talking in riddles and The Bar, but most of their others heels verge on tweeners. You could maybe put Strowman and Samoa Joe up there, but they both get cheers as well as boos. On SmackDown we have a heel champion who botches his own finisher on a regular basis, and that’s kind of it. Rusev isn’t exactly being used. On Sunday they could change that. They could make Kevin Owens the biggest heel in the company. It’s all down to whether Shane McMahon is willing to be the fall guy. The balls in their court.