Roman Reigns speaks out about his brother’s passing and his plans for WWE Payback
Even by Roman Reigns’ standards, the last two weeks have been almost unbearably difficult. Not only did the former WWE Champion suffer a brutal attack at the hands of Braun Strowman, he suffered the loss of his brother, Matt “Rosey” Anoa’i. Despite this, however, Reigns will still compete against Strowman at WWE Payback this Sunday, and he spoke with WWE.com to discuss the well-wishes he’s received, how his family is holding up and whether he thinks he’s up to facing The Monster Among Men this Sunday at all.
WWE.COM: It’s been a tough two weeks for you personally and professionally. On the personal side, WWE.com sends its condolences to your family. How are you doing and how is everyone else doing?
ROMAN REIGNS: Right now, it’s one of those situations where it’s a lot of mixed feelings. When you live in a big family, it’s always great to be able to come together, but to have to come together to send off a brother — and not only was he my brother, but in our family, even when you’re cousins, we’re all so close that we feel like brothers. That’s the type of connection we have in our family. It was an extremely sad weekend, and it’s still really tough. Everybody’s grieving. But to see our family come together and have a hundred-plus family and friends come together to celebrate my brother’s life really meant a lot. It just continually picks up our family and keeps us moving on.
Payback, 2017, and any chance I get to go in that ring, I'm representing [my brother].
WWE.COM: Obviously, as you just stated, you have your family around you. Can you talk about some of the support you’ve received from the WWE Universe and other Superstars during this time?
REIGNS: It’s crazy because it almost felt like Christmas times three. I don’t think I’ve ever received so many text messages from family and friends, especially within the company. So many guys in our locker room have reached out to me and sent their condolences and told me if there’s anything I need, don’t hesitate. I truly believe that. And talking to some of my family, that’s not just a saying. That’s real life. They want to do anything they can, whether it’s sending flowers, checking on me to try and talk, try and get down here to help out with any different thing we have to do with the services of a funeral. It’s really nice to be able to hear from all them. And, of course, through your social media, and Twitter is my main source of that, I’ve been overwhelmed with so many prayers and so many thoughts out there by my fans in the WWE Universe. Whether you’re a Roman Reigns supporter or a critic, everybody seems to understand the magnitude of the situation, and when it comes down to it, it’s a part of life but I think everybody gets it. Everybody’s been very sweet and really come to try and help me through this hard time. It really has helped.
WWE.COM: Well, once again, we’d like to reiterate our sentiment. We wish your family the best during this hard time.
REIGNS: Thank you. I just want to thank everybody who’s reached out. All my fans, everybody has been so supportive. This is a tough time but like everything in life we can learn from it and get better from it. My only hope now is that I can continue to represent my family and represent my brother and continue to push our legacy. He was my number one fan. He never missed a match, he never missed anything I did in the ring, he always had great advice for me and always reached out to talk. Payback and 2017 and any chance I get to go in that ring I’m representing him.
WWE.COM: Speaking of which, last time we saw you on Monday Night Raw was the incident at the hands of Braun Strowman with the ambulance. How are you feeling as you recuperate from that attack?
Whatever point [Braun Strowman] is trying to get across, he's handling it the wrong way ... He's got a whole storm of payback that's about to come his way.
REIGNS: Physically, I’m as beat up as I am emotionally. This has been two of the roughest weeks of my professional career and life. I’ve never experienced a loss this close since it’s my only blood brother, but I’ve also never experienced a beatdown like Braun Strowman gave me. It’s unfortunate, because whatever point he’s trying to get across, he’s handling it the wrong way. And whether he thinks he’s a monster or not, I’m the top dog, I’m the big dog in this yard. I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again: I already took out the greatest legend of all time. If anybody should be worried, it should be Braun Strowman. He’s got a whole storm of payback that’s about to come his way this Sunday.