WWE kicked off its UK tour this week as both Monday Night RAW and SmackDown Live were taped in Manchester, England.
SmackDown Live opened to an in-ring segment featuring General Manager Paige and Commissioner Shane McMahon.
It appears the WWE Universe is still unhappy with Vince’s son winning the inaugural WWE World Cup at Crown Jewel in Saudi Arabia. Shane replaced Miz in the finals of the tournament and pinned RAW Superstar Dolph Ziggler to cement himself as the “Best in the World” – a title quite synonymous with the longest reigning WWE Champion of The Modern Era, CM Punk.
At SmackDown Live tapings this week, McMahon was greeted with boos and “CM Punk” chants as the segment kicked off.
#SDLive spoilers. #WWE #WWEManchester: Paige starts the show by introducing Shane McMahon to a hugely negative reaction – and CM Punk chants! expect that to be edited heavily. ? pic.twitter.com/i7oU9itTnR
— Matty Paddock (@MattyPaddock) November 6, 2018
The negative reaction is a clear statement that fans are quite upset with McMahon winning the World Cup when he wasn’t even one of the 8 competitors in the first place.
However, Shane wittily cooled things off for an applause by saying that his stepping into the ring against Ziggler in the finals of the World Cup at Crown Jewel was purely based on instinct. McMahon further added that he may not be the best in the world and the World Cup trophy belongs to SmackDown Live and not him.
It’s worth noting that WWE was reported to have established Shane as a bonafide villain by Survivor Series that takes place on November 18, 2018. But from what appears now, the SmackDown Live Commissioner seems to have pulled back on a heel turn. Whether the swerve is only for Survivor Series or an absolute dismissal remains to be seen.
It’s worth noting that RAW currently has a heel General Manager (Baron Corbin) and heel Commissioner (Stephanie McMahon). On the other hand, SmackDown Live has a babyface GM (Paige) and babyface Commissioner (Shane McMahon). Turning the Boss’ son heel is an odd idea since WWE is known to balance the heel/babyface force in the brand rivalry.