Arn Anderson has referenced a lesson he learned direct from Vince McMahon as why Roman Reigns did not work as a babyface in WWE.
WWE's continued push of Reigns as the new top face in the promotion was regularly met with a chorus of boos by the live audience, with fans rejecting the company's attempts to put him over at the expense of almost every other talent.
Anderson believes WWE reached a point where they stopped listening to what the audience wanted, referencing the cheers for Kevin Owens on his main roster debut, while also revealing that Vince McMahon used to say it was impossible to force a babyface on the fans.
Speaking on the ARN Podcast, he said: "One of the things I did learn from Vince early on is: 'Don’t shove a babyface down the peoples necks if they’re not going to accept it because they’ll regurgitate it'. We got away from that theory and we quit listening to our audience because they will absolutely tell you what they want.
"I used Kevin Owens as an example. When he beat Cena, the first show he was on, the audience was 90% behind Kevin Owens. That week, creative should’ve sat down and went: 'I don’t care what you have written down for the next week or month, this guy is a babyface next week.'
"Doesn’t mean we change his style of work, just means that we put him in a position to be the favourite in the match. It was so crystal clear that was what they wanted, give it to them.
"The fact that Roman goes out there and spears five guys does not make Roman more of a babyface. It makes him a God, and he’s not earning his position or push. He’s just out there running through guys and the audience smells it and they don’t like it."
H/T Wrestling Inc