Though Seth Rollins has only been the WWE World Heavyweight Champion since the last Saturday in May, he somehow has the exact same number of successful title defenses as WWE's other top champion, Roman Reigns, since March, and has just one fewer world championship wins than “The Tribal Chief” this year despite his strap being roughly a month old.
And yet, to some, Rollins is currently the biggest bronze medal holder in all of wrestling, with Reigns holding the gold – see his new belt – and silver medals at a level firmly above “The Visionary.”
Fortunately, it doesn't have to be that way forever. No, Rollins has committed himself to becoming a champion the WWE Universe can be proud of whole developing a resume that makes his World Championship the most in-demand Title in professional wrestling.
“I think just kind of calling it the work-rate title is a little bit underselling it. At the end of the day, the title exists because our roster is so chock full of talent. There’s just too much to have one champion that’s not around very much, and so I think the fact that we had so many worthy contenders, people that could hold this championship, I think that is the reason the title exists. If we had a weak roster and things weren’t good and stuff wasn’t hot, it might be fine just to have one champion who wasn’t around, didn’t want to make live events, but that’s just not the case. We’re selling out left and right, we’re hot, from here to Jeddah, Saudi Arabia, Paris, France, Mexico City, it doesn’t matter. We’re just selling out left and right, and we need to have a World Heavyweight Champion on the men’s side to represent that level of competition,” Seth Rollins said on the My Love Letter To Wrestling via Fightful.
“So I think we’re going to put in the work to build this title to be as big as any championship in wrestling. We’re not naive and think that we don’t need to put that work. We know that it needs to happen. But we’ve got the roster, and the guys and the crew who are willing to put in the time to make it feel as big as it is.”
Though some will quibble with calling the World Heavyweight Championship the “work-rate title,” as the Intercontinental Championship, you know, *exists*, Rollins' commitment to making the belt special not only for himself but for the fans who show up for live shows and watch RAW religiously is a just one. If WWE lets him shine, Rollins can become a fighting champion folks can be proud of, even if the decision to have him wrestle Bron Breakker in NXT is unusual, to say the least.
Nick Khan agrees with Seth Rollins' popularity assessment.
Speaking of WWE's television output and desire to give fans more Championship matches on television and Premium Live Events, Nick Khan noted in a special appearance at the J.P. Morgan 51st Annual Global Technology, Media and Communications Conference in Boston that the company's output on Peacock has far exceeded what NBC was hoping for when they partnered with the brand in 2021.
“If you look at WWE Network in the United States, which was our own [direct-to-consumer service], which we shuttered to go into the Peacock deal about two years or so ago, [there are] all of the subscribers we had migrated to Peacock, plus millions more who NBCU would tell you are directly attributable to WWE in terms of paid subscribers,” Khan said via the Hollywood Reporter.
“We are talking about the 22 million paid Peacock subscribers, millions of them – and I can’t say exactly how many million; I know it but we have given NBCU our word that we wouldn’t broadcast that information – are because of WWE. We are basically a churn-proof popper property since we go at least once a month with our premium live events, formerly known as pay-per-view. … So we think we have over-delivered with Peacock, we think we have over-delivered with our other partners, and now it’s time to monetize it properly.”
Now granted, maybe Khan is being a tad boastful, as he said elsewhere in his appearance that NXT launched on TV during the pandemic on Tuesdays. Still, it's hard to argue with the numbers the company's CEO shared with financial experts, as he's in the process of drumming up the best possible media right deal(s) for RAW and SmackDown when they come up in the not-too-distant future. Based on the numbers known to NBC and Peacock, it's clear their next media rights negotiations will be very lucrative indeed.