WWE fans collectively rejoiced When Seth Rollins snatched Roman Reigns' WrestleMania 31 moment with the greatest MITB cash-in of all time. However, it wasn't long before that celebration turned into ridicule after Rollins had a so-so run with the WWE Championship.
And that capriciousness is still fresh in Rollins' mind.
A significant knee injury and subsequent surgery cut Rollins' 2015 run as WWE Champion short. His well-documented comeback garnered heaps of goodwill and when he finally came back, fans were ready to greet him as the ultimate babyface.
However, that didn't happen. Instead, Rollins refused to include WWE's fanbase in his story and resumed his role as one of WWE's top heels with a scathing RAW promo.
Rollins sat down with Newsweek to discuss this swerve of expectations. Even though he and WWE fans are cool now, he seems to have gotten pleasure out of twisting the knife in WWE fans' bleeding hearts.
"There were bits and pieces of me that were a little resentful at the fanbase, at the way they treated me as a heel champion and the way they talked about my reign. There was a lot of pent-up frustration I didn’t get to work out when I came back," he said.
Rollins turn as WWE Champion was trashed by some of WWE's fans. Those criticisms failed to acknowledge Rollins supporting cast—the likes of Kane and a man impersonating Sting. Then, WWE's roster didn't have the influx of NXT talent that it does now, and Rollins was forced to carry multiple segments on each episode of RAW. He was overexposed, but WWE didn't really have an alternative.
However, Rollins' character in 2018 has aligned with fans' hopes.
"There’s a little light and dark inside all of us, so if you find those motivations, it’s not hard to find who you want to be when you get back in the ring. At the end of the day, it feels more right the way it is now. I feel a better synergy with the audience now," he said.
That synergy is something every WWE Superstar craves and at the moment, the bond between Rollins and WWE's fanbase has never been stronger.
This time last year, Rollins was struggling to find his identity as a good guy, but now, his confidence is palpable, fans are chanting his tagline, and he's officially resumed his lofty trajectory. While he's holding the Intercontinental championship now, Rollins is on WWE's short list of future Universal Champions.