Seth Rollins has opened up about the reason behind a scrapped plan for his faction in WWE that spanned late 2019 and much of 2020.
The Monday Night Messiah character would see Rollins align himself with AOP (Akam and Rezar), along with Buddy Murphy (now Buddy Matthews in AEW) and eventually Austin Theory.
The inaugural WWE World Heavyweight Champion spoke about the faction with Alex McCarthy for Mail Online, with McCarthy asking:
“The stable you had going with AOP, Buddy Murphy and eventually Theory had all the potential in the world, but everything that could go wrong seemingly did. Were there originally big plans for the ensemble?”
Rollins would reflect upon the group, saying:
“Oh yeah. The character of the Monday Night Messiah was very much a cult leader, very much a spiritual guide and a mentor – all those things.
“You look at the talent I was able to bring in under that tree, but everything just kept going sideways.
“There were injuries and then the pandemic happened, there was talent shifting from the main roster to NXT and everything was just uncertain.
“Then it reached its peak with the story with Rey Mysterio and Dominik and all that and there really wasn’t anywhere else for it to go because it had been decimated throughout the year 2020.”
He would go on to discuss the potential of the stable, even indulging in fantasy booking, concluding:
“I think it had a lot of legs, I think what you saw was it just getting started in early 2020, I think we had the chance to be one of the most dominant stables in WWE at the time, this was pre-Bloodline as well.
“I would have been very interesting to see had we kept going, where everybody would have landed.
“It’s a fun little fantasy booking experiment to see what that stable against The Bloodline would have looked like, it would have been really interesting.
“But it’s just one of those, it is what it is, it happens and people have to adapt, stuff changes and you have to make the best of it.”
Akam & Rezar were released by WWE in September 2020 with Buddy Murphy being released in June 2021.
Murphy made his debut for AEW as Buddy Matthews in February 2023 and is now a member of AEW Trios Champions the House of Black along with Malakai Black and Brody King.
Austin Theory returned to NXT after his stint in Seth Rollins’ group during the pandemic but was brought back up to the main roster in 2021 and has already become a two-time United States Champion, won Money in the Bank, and beaten John Cena at WrestleMania.
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