The evidence is right in front of our eyes. The stars are aligning for 2022 to be the Summer of Drew McIntyre. And that very well could lead to the Scottish Warrior claiming his third World Championship in WWE.
McIntyre is preparing to battle it out with the Bloodline, alongside RAW Tag Team Champions RK-Bro, this Sunday at WrestleMania Backlash. Many assume this will be the start of a rivalry between the former champ and the reigning Undisputed WWE Universal Champion, Roman Reigns.
These two have been battling it out in recent months in dark matches and at house shows, but WWE (for the most part) has kept these two behemoths away from one another on TV. Their last showdown coming at Survivor Series 2020 when Reigns squeaked out a victory over the, then, WWE Champion.
WWE reportedly wants to hold off having SmackDown’s top two stars go one-on-one just a little while longer, until a bigger premium live event rolls around. So, all eyes naturally look ahead to Hell in Cell June 5 in Chicago or Money in the Bank a month later in Las Vegas. But this rivalry could easily run even longer with SummerSlam being held in McIntyre’s hometown of Nashville this year. After that, there’s Clash at the Castle in the UK in early September.
Conventional wisdom would lead you to believe that McIntyre will be heavily featured at both of those shows to close out the summer, but the man himself told me on the Bleav in Pro Wrestling Podcast, that he is not leaving anything to chance.
“You can never assume anything in WWE. Like, the second you assume or get complacent, that’s the second things don’t happen. But I know I’m gonna be working hard and as much as it makes sense, it’s still gonna take all that work. All that consistency on TV and off TV to make things happen. So yeah, doesn’t matter if I’m champion, not champion. I ideally would like to fight for the title, but if I go in there as champion and maybe Tyson Fury picks up the phone, finally. I keep telling him. Talk about me all you want. I appreciate the publicity, but you know our number. Give us a call and maybe we can make something happen.”
If McIntrye and recently retired World Heavyweight boxing champion Tyson Fury are ever going to throw down in a WWE ring, then Clash at the Castle at Principality Stadium in Cardiff, Wales would be the place to do it. This will be the first stadium show put on in the UK since SummerSlam at Wembley Stadium in 1992.
Drew McIntyre has been leading the campaign to put on such a huge event in the UK for some time now. And it didn’t take long for the enthusiastic fanbase on the other side of the pond, to show WWE it made a great decision when they shattered company pre-sale records.
“I still didn’t believe it was gonna happen because nothing’s official until it’s official in entertainment and WWE. So it wasn’t until we made the public announcement that I finally believed, okay, this is real. This is happening and was able to take a second and go, all right, we did it. This is pretty freaking cool. And it wasn’t just me. Obviously I was talking about it, but our amazing team at WWE, the committee in card, all working together, making this happen. But I do know one thing, if it didn’t have the response it had and it was a lackluster response, everyone publicly would point right at this guy (points to himself) and go, ‘Drew! You were freaking wrong.”’”
Despite becoming the first UK Superstar to win the WWE Championship, thanks to the pandemic, McIntyre never got to celebrate with his hometown crowd as the Champion. Something he hopes to rectify very soon.
A return to the main event scene would be a welcomed sight for the Scottish Warrior faithful among the WWE Universe, both domestically and abroad. His last shot at a World Championship came at Crown Jewel last October, where he came up short against Big E. Since then, he’s spent much of his time feuding with Happy Corbin and the emerging Madcap Moss.
McIntyre put the ‘Happy Time’ gang behind him at WrestleMania when he defeated Corbin, and then sliced the top rope in half with his trusty sword, Angela. The result of that match was never really in doubt, that was until Corbin hit the End of Days on Drew. At that moment, Corbin had a 99.9% chance of victory. Why? Because until McIntyre got his shoulder up before the ref finished his three-count, no one had ever kicked out of End of Days. No one.
“I could feel it when I was lying there. I could see when I was watching it back and I could see the reaction of the internet. People went, ‘Oh God, Corbin’s won it.’ And that was the point of the match where we had them. And that’s what it’s all about. No matter what you think you know, it’s catching the crowd. Losing them in the match. And that was the moment where everybody got lost 100% and his reaction to it was great,” McIntyre said. “The stunner has been kicked out. Claymore’s been kicked out. As long as it’s done in the right occasion, done the right way and enhances what’s going on in the ring, you know, there’s nothing wrong with it. So it’s cool to say I’m the first one that did it.”
There will be no backlash from either Corbin or Moss this Sunday, as those two will be squaring off with each other. For Drew, he’s now back on the road to winning back his WWE Championship. What started off as a Tag Team Title Unification match between RK-Bro and the Usos, was turned into a 6-man tag match after McIntyre found himself in the crosshairs of the Bloodline as well.
As of this writing, no gold is on the line, but you can expect chaos to ensue and future storylines to be set up in the process.
“There’s a lot of combustible elements. A lot of very established characters in there and a lot of beef with the tag teams and myself and Roman. But then the dynamic of the history of myself and Randy as well. So there’s a lot going on in that match and it’s gonna be a fun match to watch for everybody in the arena, everybody at home, but also a fun match to be part of on such a big event.”
McIntyre admits that it’s a little weird to be on the same side as The Viper after everything those two put each other through while Drew was the WWE Champion.
Orton recently celebrated the 20 year anniversary of his debut in WWE and after all that time, an argument could be made that the 14-time World Champion has never been better than he is right now. After working so closely with him, McIntyre couldn’t really argue against it.
“Yeah, for sure. I think the more relaxed you are, the more fun you’re having. The more fun the crowds see you’re having, then they start having fun with you. And I think as long as Randy’s been around, he was still somehow not fully relaxed and he was still better than basically everyone of all time. Now he’s completely relaxed. He’s totally having fun 100% and everyone can see that and he wants them to have fun with them (RK-Bro) and they’re having fun with them. And every time he is out there, there’s like a little party with himself, Riddle and the audience. And I get to be involved in this party on Sunday.”
You can check out my full interview with Drew McIntyre in the video embedded above as we dive more into WrestleMania Backlashthat scary incident with Madcap Moss at Elimination Chamber and so much more!
Rick Ucchino can be reached at Rick.Bleav@gmail.com. You can follow him on Twitter @RickUcchino and make sure to subscribe to the Bleav in Pro Wrestling YouTube Channel.