While Roman was established as the face of the company and John Cena had found success in Hollywood, things have elevated to a new level in 2021 with Cena becoming an even bigger star and Reigns becoming the head of the table.
Speaking on Cheap Heat, Reigns discussed how he has respect for Cena.
"At No Mercy, I had already been in the position [of locker room leader]. John had been around periodically and jumping in for stretches, but I was still the main event. If he jumped into a live event to help out, he would go on before intermission and I'd close us out. At the same time, I was much younger. That's where this process that we're in now and these new layers that I'm showcasing took every day, every week on the road, all these Manias to put myself in this position to where I can tap in and maximize my potential. At the same time, this is the beautiful thing about our business, it the respect we have for our history and the respect for the superstars that pulled that wagon. It would be a bald-faced lie if someone said John Cena didn't tow the train for a long time. I will always have respect for that. Vince [McMahon] will always have great respect for that. Guys like Undertaker, that's why we have these legendary contracts to keep these guys. They paid their dues and guided our business and laid the foundation for us to continue this journey and continue this success. When they come back, it's only to bring more eyes and make it a bigger event. When you have someone like myself -- and John was in this position with Dwayne and hopefully one day, I'll be in the same position coming back and there will be a new top dog. That's what drives business. When our guys go out and find success and bring that limelight and shine back to their first love," said Reigns.
As far as who he could pass the torch to, Roman isn't quite sure anyone is ready. You can find his full comments on passing the torch by clicking here.
WWE is reportedly hopeful that Cena and Reigns will clash again at SummerSlam.
Fightful will have live coverage of WWE SmackDown beginning at 8 p.m. ET on Friday.
If you use any of the quotes above, please credit the original source with a h/t and link back to Fightful for the transcription.