Rivalries play a major role in keeping WWE and other professional wrestling companies interesting and entertaining. Nobody likes a match that is just put together a few moments prior. A convincing story with buildup prior to the match makes us wait anxiously for that match. These stories generally revolve around betrayal, jealousy or other forms of hatred. Rivalry or feud helps in telling a story that makes an upcoming match interesting but there are many rivalries which did not progress and were just teased and forgotten but fans still wait for these feuds to progress and culminate in a match. These rivalries are discussed below:
At TLC 2017, Braun Strowman was betrayed and attacked by his teammates which included The Bar, The Miz and Kane. After being betrayed, Braun returned 8 days later to exact his revenge on The Miz. It seemed like an entertaining feud was on the horizon as almost all feuds involving The Miz are entertaining and Strowman also proved through his feuds with Sami Zayn and Roman Reigns that he can carry amazing feuds. This rivalry would have been quite enjoyable to witness but unfortunately, it didn’t progress as The Miz went on to feud with Roman Reigns and took some time off while Strowman went after Kane and Brock Lesnar.
When Kurt Angle announces Jason Jordan as his son, WWE Universe turned on Jordan which led to him slowly turning a heel. He was paired with Seth Rollins after Dean Ambrose was injured. Rollins started showing signs of frustration with Jordan as Jordan often costed Seth Rollins important matches. It was evident that a feud between Rollins and Jordan would soon kickoff and would result in a match at Wrestlemania 34 but unfortunately, Jordan got injured and underwent neck surgery while Rollins became a singles competitor again. It has been rumored that upon his return, Jordan would reform The American Alpha with Chad Gable while Seth would reform his team with Dean Ambrose, which would leave the story between Rollins and Jordan untold.
On the 25th Anniversary of Monday Night Raw, Elias bumped into Chris Jericho in an entertaining backstage segment. WWE Universe was quick to imagine a possible feud between the two which had the potential to be quite entertaining as Elias and Jericho are quite alike e.g. their passion for singing but unfortunately, Chris Jericho went to NJPW and became the IWGP Intercontinental Champion there and would likely stay there for some time which would lead to this feud being forgotten or discarded.
On the October 6, 2014th edition of Monday Night Raw, The Rock made a surprise appearance and confronted Rusev. The segment was entertaining and although it was clear that it was just a one off segment, yet the WWE Universe held hope for a possible feud between the two. The Rock continued to make appearances for WWE in the future and even had a short match with Erick Rowan at Wrestlemania 32 but his segment with Rusev was forgotten and there are no signs for the feud to be revived.
In 2010, during a match between The Undertaker and Bret Hart, Nexus, led by Wade Barrett, came to the ring and laid waste to The Undertaker. Then, during a Buried Alive match between The Undertaker and Kane, Nexus once again brutally attacked The Undertaker and buried him. The Undertaker returned almost 5 months later and started a feud with Triple H. WWE Universe was waiting for the Deadman to show up and destroy Nexus but that feud was forgotten and there hadn’t been any mention of it since. Nexus disbanded in summer 2011 making it impossible for the feud to ever restart again.
Brock Lesnar made an impact when he entered the Royal Rumble Match for the first time in 13 years and cleared the ring. He also eliminated Luke Harper, Erick Rowan and Braun Strowman. When Bray Wyatt finally made his entrance, Lesnar was attacked by the rest of the entire family and was eliminated. This was meant to be a fresh feud and something unique for Brock Lesnar but unfortunately, Bray got injured because of which we never got to see how Brock Lesnar would have reacted and handled all of The Wyatt Family alone. Brock defeated Luke and Bray in a handicap match at Roadblock 2016 in a match which barely involved Bray. Lesnar vs. The Wyatt Family would have been an exceptional rivalry. Lesnar went on to feud with Dean Ambrose while Bray recovered and managed The Wyatt Family.
Shawn Michaels helped Randy Orton in defeating Daniel Bryan at Hell in a Cell 2013. Michaels was the referee and hit Daniel Bryan with a sweet chin music in the end because of which Randy won. Michaels did this to help The Authority, led by his best friend Triple H. Fans quickly started to speculate that this would lead to Shawn Michaels coming out of retirement to have a dream match with Daniel Bryan but there was no payoff. Michaels and Bryan were involved in some segments later that year but with time, the rumors of a possible Bryan vs. Michaels match were put to rest. Shawn Michaels has recently shown some interest in having one more match but it’s rumored that if it does happen, it will happen against either Seth Rollins or AJ Styles.
Everyone wants to see a battle of spears, and there was a strong possibility of seeing a Roman Reigns vs. Goldberg match in 2017 as Roman Reigns and Goldberg confronted each other and it didn’t seem like a friendly confrontation. In the end, they had to put their differences aside to take down Braun Strowman. At Royal Rumble, however, Goldberg was eliminated before Reigns even entered the match and we never got to see the two juggernauts fight. At Wrestlemania, Goldberg jokingly accused Roman Reigns of stealing his finishing move. There haven’t been any signs of the feud since although Goldberg hints at a possible match at Wrestlemania 35. We will have to wait and see if it’s true.
When Batista returned in 2014, he was expected to stay in the company for 2 years as he intended that run to be his final run with the WWE. Batista, after winning the Royal Rumble 2014, confronted Brock Lesnar and The WWE World Heavyweight Champion Randy Orton. It seemed like a Batista vs. Brock Lesnar feud which had been in the making for nearly 12 years then would finally kick off but the negative reaction Batista received on winning the Rumble led to his heel turn and how we was booked after that was quite disappointing and left WWE in June to focus on his Hollywood career. Batista still wishes to return to WWE but the chances of seeing The Animal and The Beast in the same ring now are slim to none.
In December 2013, CM Punk was shoved by Triple H during a brawl between former and present World Champions which led to CM Punk attacking Triple H in retaliation which started a feud between CM Punk and The Authority. CM Punk and The Director of Operations Kane were involved in a short feud in 2010. The feud would have resulted in CM Punk going after the leader of the Authority Triple H which would have led to a match between Punk and HHH at Wrestlemania 30 but CM Punk left WWE after Royal Rumble because of a number of reasons and The Authority had to restart their feud with Daniel Bryan. It was a loss for both WWE and CM Punk as a feud between CM Punk and The Authority would have turned out to be really good as CM Punk was an excellent storyteller and his feuds with The Undertaker, John Cena, The Rock etc. were proofs of this statement.