WWE's Day 1 event seemed to dodge all issues with COVID-19 throughout the week, running short of luck on Saturday night hours before the event. WWE was forced to make a major change to the show's main event after Roman Reigns tested positive for COVID-19 and had to drop from the Universal Title showdown with Brock Lesnar.
That's not all, as Lesnar was then added to the WWE Championship match and an impromptu face-off with Bobby Lashley. Lesnar steps in to the already packed fatal 4-way with Seth Rollins, Kevin Owens and Lashley going for Big E's belt. Trying to guess the outcome now seems silly, but Lesnar vs. Lashley is a showdown fans have wanted since the latter returned to WWE.
BREAKING: @BrockLesnar to challenge for WWE Championship tonight in Fatal 5-Way Match at #WWEDay1 following @WWERomanReigns testing positive for COVID-19. https://t.co/wXmr4kzcz5 pic.twitter.com/WrRFmDSRjR— WWE (@WWE) January 1, 2022
Reigns shared the bad news on Twitter, just a short time before the event was set to begin. "I yearn to perform tonight at [WWE Day 1] to defend my Universal Championship," Reigns wrote on the platform. "However, unfortunately, earlier today I tested positive for COVID-19. Due to the proper protocols I am unable to compete as originally scheduled. I look forward to returning to action as soon as possible."
The current Universal Champion and "Head of the Table" has been on fire since returning near the end of the initial COVID-19 lockdown in 2020. Fans quickly offered well-wishes and hope for a speedy recovery for the superstar, remembering his caution early in the pandemic due to his cancer remission and his compromised status in face of the disease's spread.
WWE changed their policy on COVID-19 testing in the last week after several superstars tested positive ahead of a Madison Square Garden show earlier this week. The decision preceded the CDC's change in virus response and falls in line with other major sports organizations dealing with the Omicron variant of the COVID-19 virus.
Reigns was set to begin a road to WrestleMania storyline with his rematch against Lesnar after their last battle during Crown Jewel in Saudi Arabia. Reigns walked away the winner, leaving the previously planned rematch as the important next step for both men heading into WrestleMania.