WWE Payback 2017: Chris Jericho Winning The US Title Makes No Sense

What the hell just happened? Chris Jericho beat Kevin Owens for the United States Title. The win sends him to SmackDown Live where he now faces AJ Styles, who won a No 1 contender’s match.

Excuse me?

I thought the idea was for Styles to face Kevin Owens in a feud that could have been Match of the Year implications. All, I can say is I pray to the wrestling gods that Owens wins the title back as early as Tuesday night so fans get to see the feud they so desire.

I feel like Roddy Piper just pulled a fast one on us.

Just when you think you know the answers, I change the questions.

As if the superstar shuffle wasn’t confusing enough, the win by Jericho moves him over to SmackDown Live and throws everything we expected to happen Sunday night at the Payback pay-per-view in the trash. I suppose the McMahons aren’t done playing with our emotions. A Styles-Jericho match has no interest for me or any of the fans who follow the blue brand. I want a mulligan. I want change. I want a replay and I want someone to tell me this was just a dream.

Anything but this kind of matchup. Styles and Jericho ushered in the Phenomenal One’s career in WWE, but once the six-time World Champion turned on his tag team partner, fans lost interest.

Unless Owens recovers from his injured hand and takes back “HIS” United States Title on Tuesday night, the company that wants to give everyone better matches, better storylines and better booking just felt a cannon ball of their own. I get the notion of Jericho and Owens putting on a show, telling a solid story. And maybe there is a way to include Styles in a “Triple Threat” match for the strap.

I wrote last week WWE had a real chance to make an impact with the United States Title by making it the most important strap on Tuesday Nights. Once again, the company threw a bunch of minutae on the wall and hoped it all would stick.

The only thing I can say if Jericho retains the title for any extended period of time, is that he makes Owens, Styles and anyone else better. Styles doesn’t need the push, unless it is to once again book Jericho as a heel and the fan favorite makes the long-awaited babyface turn.

It’s a thought, but it’s also very unlikely.

WWE does not have the depth to find more appealing feuds. Owens-Styles was one that could have raised the bar. I also reiterated last week this is the kind of feud that had Edge-Cena, Cena-Punk and Flair-Brisco all over it. Why the sudden change is beyond me.

I still believe there is a chance for the United States Title to become “the” belt on Tuesday nights. The run by Jericho could be short lived, which could still lead to a Styles-Owens confrontation. I’m just upset how WWE is going about it, and even more upset the title is back in Jericho’s hands when it is blatantly obvious the other alternative would have been better for everyone involved.


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