Work or not, it’s not hard to believe Kevin Owens wasn’t happy about where he landed in the WWE Draft July 19.
In an interview with UK website JOE and other wrestling journalists, Owens understood being picked after certain marquee names, but ultimately was offended by his draft spot.
“I was picked way later than I should have been. I mean, I understand not being picked before Roman Reigns or John Cena or Ambrose or Seth Rollins, those guys have been the figureheads of WWE for several years now ...I even understand being picked above Charlotte, who was the Women's Champion at the time, and who was the face of the Women's division. Even Finn Balor, who was coming up from NXT - he's a big deal ... But being picked as late as I was was kind of a slap in the face, to be honest. But I'll use it as motivation as to why I should be the face of RAW,” Owens said.
Owens was drafted 18th overall in Round 4 by RAW. He was picked just after Intercontinental Champion The Miz (with Maryse) and just before Baron Corbin, who was called up from NXT at RAW following WrestleMania 32.
But of the 17 picks that came before Owens, some of them might be hard to swallow for Kevin Owens (the character) or Kevin Steen (the person). Finn Balor was drafted 5th by RAW and is getting a big push, but Owen and Balor share similar history as both were NXT champion and spent time in indy promotions prior to WWE. Longtime friend and now bitter rival Sami Zayn was drafted 11th in Round 3. Chris Jericho, a Superstar who has been used to help put over new and evolving talent, was drafted 15th.
While the wounds of the draft are still fresh, Owens isn’t worried in the long run about his role in the company.
“You're asking me who will emerge from the New Era. As humbly as I can put it, within a few months or a few years, people will see that I am the best thing on RAW, the best thing in WWE," Owens said.
Owens is fresh off of a feud with Sami Zayn that lasted the better part of six months.