We Wanted A New Belt: This Ain’t It, Hunter

To mark the 1,000 day reign of Roman Reigns as Universal Champion, Triple H came out to reveal and award Roman the new Undisputed WWE Title belt design. When I saw a podium out there (the same one that The Rock used to reveal the original “big logo” belt after retiring Cena’s design) with a title under a cover, I got excited. As did, I imagine, everyone else. “What would it look like?” “How will the new design compare to other titles?” “Is it going to be that new winged eagle belt we all wanted?” And then……..the exact same belt we’ve had since 2014 but just with gold.

Like, really??

Let me state it clearly: there is nothing about the new belt that makes me want to give a crap about it. It reminds me of SummerSlam 2016: the big red Universal copycat title was revealed and the fans were like “This is stupid! It’s the same belt, just red!” and proceeded to rain on the whole match with “Your belt sucks!” and “Heeeeeeeey we want a new belt!” chants.

And if it wasn’t for The Usos coming out, they would’ve likely gotten a similar reaction to that belt from the crowd present. The second Triple H revealed that belt, there was a mixed reaction from the fans. You could very clearly hear many audible boos. People weren’t happy, and I don’t blame them.

That title doesn’t scream “1,000 days as champion”! This belt design, more so than the new World Heavyweight Championship belt, screams “consolation prize”.

The fact of the matter is: if you’re going to make a new championship belt to celebrate the first 1,000 day championship reign in WWE since that of Hulk Hogan, you need to actually make a new belt with a new design. Just last month, WWE archivist Ben Brown did a video on WWE’s YouTube channel going through every WWE title design to present. And every title had something different. Every title was unique. Even on WWE’s social media, they had posts with the different belt designs and trying to get people to participate by asking their favorite design. This title just says, “We don’t care, here ya go”. Which is absolutely sad. Especially from Triple H, who of all people, should respect the championship he himself held 9 times with 4 different designs.

Now, if this is just meant to be a segway or stop-gap title until Cody, okay. If it’s supposed to be a “special title” for Roman in the vein of the Smoking Skull belt for Stone Cold or the Planet’s Champion belt for Daniel Bryan, etc., then fine. We’ll deal with it. But if this is going to be the title Cody Rhodes will wear around his waist after he dethrones Roman at long last, then this ain’t gonna fly.

We get it, WWE and its marketing the belt. We get it. But you can do it without being tacky. You can do it without just trotting the same design out with a different color a la John Cena’s “fruity pebble” phase. It’s unbecoming, WWE. You gave us hope of a new belt and this time, let us down. Hopefully, it’s not for much longer.