I just got done watching the new WWE Networks Series, WWE 365: Kevin Owens. At first, I thought this was just going to be another “version” of the WWE 24 series. I was delightfully wrong. The premise of the show is going over a year span, or 365 days, in a superstar’s career which I love the concept of. For this particular episode on Kevin Owens, it covered from Summerslam 2016 to Summerslam 2017. Kevin Owens sat down and went over how he felt his year went including how we thought his matches went and how he was feeling emotionally. The series also shows videos covering particular events throughout the timeframe. I will be going over the topics discussed and include my personal opinions on what was covered.
Starting with Summerslam 2016, Kevin Owens was teaming up with Chris Jericho to take on Big Cass and Enzo Amore in the opening match. Owens went on to say that at the time, he would have liked to be in a higher profile match and be closing out the show instead of opening the show. In retrospect, Owens said he wished he would have taken it in more and enjoyed the match even though he was opening the pay per view. Owens says how he loved Jericho when he was younger and now he was teaming with his idol. Owens admits that his work with Jericho was some of his favorite moments in his career. While riding on the rode together, Owens and Jericho shared many stories with each other and bonded. Owens also goes over how happy he was for Finn Balor winning the Universal Championship that same night and felt torn when he found out Balor got injured in the match. This was one of his best friends that just won the Universal Championship but the selfish side of him knew this was an opening that could move him to the next level where he wanted to be.
One week later, Kevin Owens won a Fatal 4 Way match also involving Seth Rollins, Roman Reigns, and Big Cass to win the Universal Championship. Besides the obvious fact of winning his first major championship in WWE, Owens says there were two things that made that night special to him. The first thing was that someone who he respected at a very high level, Triple H, awarded him the championship and also helped him out during the match. Triple H was someone who Owens worked with a lot down in NXT all the way up to the main roster. The second thing that made his night is that Finn Balor Face Timed Owens right after he won the championship. Owens says this was the greatest point in his professional wrestling career because he had dreamed about this his whole life.
Up until the end of 2016, Owens said his work with Jericho was great and he really thought a culmination point at Wrestlemania 33 for the Universal Championship between himself and Jericho would be fantastic. Chris Jericho would also go on to win the United States Championship, so both of them would be holding championships while teaming with each other. After the Festival of Friendship on Raw would see the best friends split up, Owens really thought a match between the two for the championship would be the perfect ending to their long storyline. However, Goldberg would end up defeating Owens at the Fastlane pay per view in early 2017. Owens says he was always a “WWE Guy” and never a “WCW Guy” and hated WCW. To be facing Goldberg was cool for him. He just wishes they could have had a match that lasted more than 22 seconds.
Now that Owens lost the Universal Championship, his focus was getting after Jericho for costing him his Universal Championship. Owens also wanted to capture the United States Championship for the first time. The match was set for Wrestlemania 33 between Kevin Owens and Chris Jericho for the WWE United States Championship. Owens was very excited to have his first singles match at Wrestlemania. He was very antsy for the match and wanted to steal the show. Footage shows Owens after winning the match going backstage and asking Vince McMahon if the match was good and you can see Vince clearly disappointed and telling Owens that was not the type of match they were looking for. You could tell instantly that Owens was upset and disappointed in himself. This should have been a moment that Owens cherished. He won his first Wrestlemania match which was a single match for the United States Championship. Owens told the story of how disappointed he was in himself but tried really hard to look at the positives. Shortly after Wrestlemania, Owens would be drafted to Smackdown Live! and he took this as a chance to reinvent himself.
This when Owens came up with the “Face of America” gimmick. Owens would clean his beard up, trim his hair, and start dressing nicer in suits to fit this new gimmick. Owens would go on to lose his United States Championship to Jericho at Payback, then win it back shortly after for the second time. Then, Owens would go on to lose the United States Championship to AJ Styles at a live event at Madison Square Garden. Owens would then go on to win it back on an episode of Smackdown Live!. Owens felt like he just reinvented himself surrounding the championship but he kept losing it. It was during this time that Owens dropped his “Face of America” gimmick heading into Summerslam where a match between AJ Styles and Kevin Owens would face off with Shane McMahon as the special guest referee. This would officially end the time of 365 days from Summerslam 2016 to Summerslam 2017. Even though Kevin Owens lost his match for the United States Championship, he thought they put on a great match that stole the show. When Owens went into the back and saw Vince McMahon he was told by Vince that the match was fantastic. You can clearly see Owens takes what Vince says to heart and the fact that he approved of the match meant a lot to Owens.
They would briefly go over Owens starting his feud with Shane McMahon and their Hell in a Cell match at the Hell in a Cell pay per view. Overall, Owens went over how he puts a lot of pressure on himself to perform at a very high level but needs to learn how to look at the silver lining and not always be so hard on himself. He is happy with where his current direction is going and is looking to get back into the main event picture. I truly believe Kevin Owens is an underrated talent and I think his time with NXT and the WWE main roster has been great. There is a lot more that he can do and I look forward to seeing what he does in the future.
Have you watched the WWE Network series WWE 365 on Kevin Owens? What did you think about it? Let me know by commenting and sharing your opinions!
And with that, have a GLORIOUS DAY!