Why WWE Turned Dean Ambrose Heel the Night of Roman Reigns Leukemia Announcement

With the serious news of Roman Reigns' leukemia diagnosis, conventional wisdom said that WWE would try to end Raw on a positive note. However, Raw closed with Dean Ambrose brutally attacking Seth Rollins and executing one of the most poignant heel turns in WWE history.

So why would WWE make the conscious decision to go against the grain of what we all wanted—to go home feeling good—and have Dean Ambrose turn on Rollins -- and effectively Reigns? Well, because this is professional wrestling.

During an episode of Wrestling Observer Radio, Dave Meltzer explained that even though Reigns' situation is heartbreaking, Monday's episode of Raw was an ideal time for Ambrose to do something terrible.

"They live in a world where their fake world is more important than the real world, and when you think like that you do things like this, he said. "You do things like all of the decisions that they make, or many of the decisions that they make. It's kind of sad in that way."

Perhaps the best explanation for WWE's choice is the business mantra: "The show must go on." While the human inside all of us wants to take time to appreciate Reigns, the inner ringmaster of Vince McMahon knows that Ambrose turning heel on such an emotional night would instantly make him WWE's top villain.

"But this time the real world infringed on their fake television show, and instead of respecting it, it's like the mentality is: 'OK it sucks, it's sad, so how do we benefit from it?' I was thinking that if he does get cured and he comes back it'll be a wonderful story, but I wasn't thinking how can we benefit from this in the next two hours?'"

Aside from Reigns' news, Ambrose's turn is the second biggest story in WWE right now. By flipping him two hours after Reigns laid down his Universal Championship, WWE maximized their opportunity. While losing Reigns is not measurable in words, WWE now has a red-hot Ambrose. Not only that, but they also flipped Braun Strowman and Elias from bad to good, and in just 24 hours, Raw's roster flexes an entirely new chemistry.


What's gone overlooked is that Ambrose and Rollins are freshly crowned Raw Tag Team Champions. How WWE moves forward with their story will be a compelling watch, but it's hard to imagine them staying champions for long. Instead, a tussle over Rollins' Intercontinental Championship seems more likely.

[H/T Ringside News]