Backstage Update on the Original Plan for Damian Priest’s Main Roster Debut

It was revealed earlier this week that Damian Priest was originally in the plans for the first episode of SmackDown in 2021.

According to a report by The Wrestling Observer, the main event that WWE planned for last week’s show saw Roman Reigns and Jey Uso take on Kevin Owens and Damian Priest.

At first, Owens was willing to go along with the plans but did point out that it didn’t make any sense for him to have a “best friend” since he had nothing in common with The Archer of Infamy.

“They had decided this idea that we need to make stars on SmackDown…we need new babyface stars. So it’s kind of like somebody asked who can be the next new babyface in NXT that can come on the main roster and the guy was Damian Priest.”

“So they had a story where it was supposed to be Damian Priest was Kevin Owens’ best friend and he’s helping him against Roman Reign and Jey Uso.”

“In fact, they were going to do a tag match on the show Friday night and Damian Priest is there and ready and all that and Kevin Owens said essentially that it makes no sense for him to be my best friend, what do we have in common, why would he be my best friend, we can do it but why is he my best friend? So Roman Reigns agreed and since it’s Roman Reigns, it was nixed. I don’t know where Heyman stood on it but it was nixed.”

Dave Meltzer has since noted that WWE could have nixed this plan altogether, and Priest could be promoted to Monday Night Raw instead, following his New Year’s Evil loss.