5 WWE Superstars who could win the Universal Championship in 2021

The WWE Universal Championship is the biggest accomplishment a male WWE Superstar can win on SmackDown. Since its inception in 2016, the Universal Championship has quickly been established as a prestigious world title.

Former WWE Universal Champions include iconic superstars such as Goldberg, Brock Lesnar, Seth Rollins and “The Fiend” Bray Wyatt.

Roman Reigns is the current WWE Universal Champion, as he captured the championship at SummerSlam last August. Since then, The Big Dog has ruled SmackDown with an iron fist.

Still, many fans always wonder which WWE Superstar will be the next champion. Can someone step up to the main event level and win the Universal Championship for the first time? Or could a former Universal Champion once again reach the summit of SmackDown?

Here’s a closer look at five wrestlers who could win the WWE Universal Championship in 2021.


#5 Former WWE Champion Daniel Bryan

Daniel Bryan is set to challenge Roman Reigns for the Universal Championship at Fastlane
Daniel Bryan is set to challenge Roman Reigns for the Universal Championship at Fastlane

Daniel Bryan has never held the WWE Universal Championship during his impressive career. The leader of the YES! Movement is a former 5-time WWE World Heavyweight Champion, but SmackDown’s world title has escaped him.

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But based on the landscape of SmackDown, Bryan is a leading contender on this list. He’s currently scheduled to challenge Universal Champion Roman Reigns at WWE Fastlane. Many fans expect the Tribal Chiefs to retain the gold and face Edge at WrestleMania 37, but plans can always change in WWE.

Daniel Bryan has hinted that time is running out on his in-ring career, and the former WWE Champion even stated that this year’s WrestleMania could be his last. Bryan could finally win the Universal Championship in 2021 before he retires from in-ring competition on his own terms.

#4 Former WWE Universal Champion Seth Rollins

The SmackDown Saviour is a 2-time former WWE Universal Champion
The SmackDown Saviour is a 2-time former WWE Universal Champion

Seth Rollins certainly has plenty of history with the WWE Universal Championship. The Savior of SmackDown is a former 2-time WWE Universal Champion, but he hasn’t held the title since 2019.

In fact, Rollins’ Universal Championship loss to “The Fiend” Bray Wyatt at Crown Jewel in 2019 began his transformation into the Messiah.

Since he returned to WWE television in 2021, Rollins has been engaged in a feud with Cesaro. As he continues to preach about his “vision” for Friday Night SmackDown, Rollins appears to be relentless in changing the WWE Universe “for the greater good.”

Perhaps “the greater good” that he speaks of includes a lengthy WWE Universal Championship reign. Rollins certainly has every reason to target current champion Roman Reigns. The duo teamed together as two-thirds of The Shield, one of the most dominant factions in WWE history.

Fans would certainly be fascinated to see the two former Shield teammates face off once again. Their distinct personas would make this conflict even more engaging.

The last time Rollins and Reigns faced off in singles action for a world championship was at the Money in the Bank pay-per-view in 2016. That night, Rollins defeated The Big Dog to claim the WWE Championship for the second time in his career.

If the two stars clash for the WWE Universal Championship in 2021, history could repeat itself. The SmackDown Savior could take his place atop the blue brand as the WWE Universal Champion.

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