He even handcuffed Reigns to part of the Rumble set and seemed to have victory well in hand as Paul Heyman fumbled with unlocking the Universal Champion. Unfortunately for Owens, the referee mysteriously stopped his count, giving Heyman extra time to unlock Reigns and costing Owens the title.
Appearing on The Jake Asman Show, Owens, speaking in-character, believes he was screwed over by the referee.
"I'm still recovery from the Royal Rumble. It was a pretty rough night for me. I was thrown off a 12-foot platform onto a bunch of tables, I got hit by a golf cart, I jumped off a forklift that was about 10 feet in the air, I burned my arm on a light that was part of our setup, and to top it all off, I didn't win because I think a referee got paid off or something. A lot to recover from. I've never been cheated by a referee that way before. I used to play hockey in Canada as a kid so you would think it would happen before," he said.
When asked about his game plan for the match, Owens once again cited the referee not properly doing his job.
"I had a few options on how to approach it. I could try to knock him out, but he's a tough guy. I figured I could go after his legs so he couldn't stand up, but it wasn't working that well. He went a different route and tried to throw me off high things and hit me with vehicles. Different strategies. Towards the end, I turned his own trick on him. He brought handcuffs, I handcuffed him to something and I thought I had him, I really did have him. Some screw-ups from the referees and here I am, sitting in my car without the Universal Championship. It goes to show, no matter how prepared you are for a match in WWE, you never know how it's going to go," said Owens.
After being unlocked from the cuffs, Reigns locked a guillotine choke on Owens, which caused him to pass out and remain down for the 10-count.
Owens returned on WWE SmackDown, closing the show with a stunner on Reigns. If you missed anything from WWE SmackDown, check out Fightful's full report on the show by clicking here.
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