This past February’s Elimination Chamber premium live event saw Roman Reigns successfully defend his Undisputed WWE Universal Championship against the former ‘Honorary Uce’ Sami Zayn. The match came after Zayn finally turned on The Bloodline at the Royal Rumble following months as a member of the faction, during which he he was often the most popular character across the company’s weekly programming despite being a heel.
Prior to joining The Bloodline, Zayn was engaged in a comedic feud with Jackass’ Johnny Knoxville, with the pair the soon-to -be ‘Honorary Uce’ being the butt of Knoxville’s jokes as he defeated Zayn at WrestleMania 38.
Speaking recently to ESPN ahead of WrestleMania 39, Roman Reigns praised Zayn’s work with Knoxville last year, before stating that he believes no one else could’ve brought the ‘Honorary Uce’ character to life like Sami did.
“I was entertained by him when he did the Jackass stuff and really respected the way he navigated that creative [process]. I believe I can do work of this level with… other guys, they’d just be different. It wouldn’t be the same. It would be a different character, a different angle, a different layer. Nobody would be able to be the ‘Honorary Uce’ other than Sami Zayn. He’s endearing in that way where you want something good for him. Even if he doesn’t deserve it, you still want it for him.”-Roman Reigns
Whilst Zayn was ultimately unsuccessful at ending Roman’s historic title reign at Elimination Chamber, he’ll still have the chance to play a part in The Bloodline’s downfall at WrestleMania 39, as he and Kevin Owens are set to challenge The Usos for the Undisputed WWE Tag Team Championships on Night 1 of the event.
In the main event of Night 2, Reigns will put the Undisputed WWE Universal Championship on the line against Royal Rumble winner Cody Rhodes, with many fans believing that the ‘American Nightmare’ will finally be the one to dethrone the ‘Tribal Chief’.