Colby Lopez was born on May 28, 1986, in Buffalo, Iowa. He is of Armenian, German, and Irish descent. His surname, Lopez, comes from his elder brother Brandon's Mexican-American father, whom Rollins considers his father, as seen in WWE 24. He graduated from Davenport West High School in 2004. As a teenager, he was an introvert and a big fan of rock and heavy metal music who lived a straight edge lifestyle. Rollins trained at a wrestling school owned by Danny Daniels on the border of Chicago and Oak Park, Illinois.
At Glory by Honor VI in November, Black defeated Alex "Sugarfoot" Payne, but was attacked by The Briscoe Brothers following the match. He appeared with The Age of the Fall in their match against The Briscoe Brothers during the main event. At Final Battle in December, Black and Jacobs defeated The Briscoe Brothers to win the ROH World Tag Team Championship.
At Final Battle in December 2008, after Black lost a number one contender match to Austin Aries, Jacobs turned on him, and Black was then attacked by Aries. At Full Circle, Black was given a non-title match against then-ROH World Champion Nigel McGuinness on January 16, 2009 where Black was victorious. The following night, Black faced McGuinness in a title match, which ended in a time limit draw. On June 26 at Violent Tendencies, Black defeated Jimmy Jacobs in a steel cage match to end their feud.
ROH World Champion and departure (2009-2010)
In September 2009, Black took a hiatus after receiving surgery on his neck. On October 10, Black defeated Kenny King in a first-round match and then Claudio Castagnoli, Colt Cabana, Delirious, Chris Hero and Roderick Strong in the finals to win the 2009 Survival of the Fittest tournament, which earned him a match for the ROH World Championship. On December 19 at Final Battle 2009, ROH's first live pay-per-view, Black wrestled then ROH World Champion Austin Aries to a 60-minute time limit draw. Because of this draw, then ROH commissionerJim Cornette booked the two in a rematch between February 13, 2010 for the company's Eighth Anniversary Show. The booking saw Cornette set up a judging panel with himself on and one person picked by each competitor, in order for there to be a decisive winner in case of another draw. Aries picked Kenny King while Black picked Roderick Strong, whom he guaranteed an ROH World Championship title shot should he win. At the event, Black pinned Aries to win the ROH World Championship.
In July 2011, Rollins began a feud with Dean Ambrose. Ambrose and Rollins had their first match for the FCW 15 Championship in a 15-minute Iron Man match on the August 14 episode of FCW, which ended in a draw with neither men scoring a fall and, as a result, Rollins retained his title. A subsequent 20-minute rematch for the title two weeks later resulted in a similar 0-0 draw. A second 30-minute rematch for the title on the September 18 episode of FCW went to a time limit 2-2 draw and the match was sent into sudden death overtime, where Rollins scored a pinfall to win the match 3-2. On September 22, Rollins lost the FCW 15 Championship to Damien Sandow by disqualification after Ambrose attacked Sandow late in the match.
When WWE rebranded FCW into NXT in August 2012, Rollins' NXT TV debut took place on the second episode of the rebooted NXT at Full Sail University on June 27, when he defeated Jiro. Rollins entered the Gold Rush Tournament to crown the inaugural NXT Champion where he defeated Jinder Mahal in the tournament finals on the August 29 episode of NXT. On the October 10 episode of NXT, Rollins had his first successful defense of his title after he beat Michael McGillicutty.
The Shield (2012-2014)
Rollins (right) debuted on WWE's main roster as a member of The Shield in November 2012
The Shield continued to aid Punk after TLC, attacking both Ryback and The Rock in January 2013. It was revealed on the January 28 episode of Raw that Punk and his managerPaul Heyman had been paying The Shield and Brad Maddox to work for them all along.
The Shield then quietly ended their association with Punk while beginning a feud with John Cena, Ryback and Sheamus that led to a six-man tag match on February 17 at Elimination Chamber, which The Shield won. The Shield then faced Sheamus, Big Show and Randy Orton at WrestleMania 29, where The Shield emerged victorious in their first WrestleMania match. The following night on Raw, The Shield attempted to attack The Undertaker, but were stopped by Team Hell No. This set up a six-man tag team match on the April 22 episode of Raw, which The Shield won. On the May 13 episode of Raw, The Shield's undefeated streak in televised six-man tag team matches ended in a disqualification loss in a six-man elimination tag team match against John Cena, Kane and Daniel Bryan.
On the June 2 episode of Raw, Rollins turned on Ambrose and Reigns to rejoin The Authority, turning heel once again. He then entered himself into the Money in the Bank ladder match at the titular event, which he won after Kane interfered. Rollins defeated Ambrose twice, the first being at Battleground in July via forfeit after their match was called off by Triple H after a pre-match attack by Ambrose on Rollins backstage and the second in August at SummerSlam in a lumberjack match after hitting him with his Money in the Bank briefcase following interference from Kane. The following night on Raw, Rollins defeated Ambrose once again in a Falls Count Anywhere match by referee stoppage after Kane interfered again and helped Rollins execute a Curb Stomp on Ambrose through cinder blocks, giving him a kayfabe injury. In September, Rollins began feuding with Roman Reigns and a match between the two was set up for Night of Champions, but Reigns developed a legitimate incarcerated hernia which required surgery prior to the event, resulting in Rollins being declared the winner via forfeit, before being attacked by a returning Ambrose. Shortly after, Rollins adopted Jamie Noble and Joey Mercury as bodyguards, later being named "J&J Security". The feud between Rollins and Ambrose culminated at Hell in a Cell where Rollins defeated Ambrose in a Hell in a Cell match after Bray Wyatt interfered and attacked Ambrose. Following Hell in a Cell, tension began growing between Rollins and Randy Orton due to The Authority's preferential treatment of Rollins, leading to a singles match between the two on the November 3 episode of Raw, which Rollins won. After the match, Orton attacked The Authority but was overpowered, resulting in Rollins performing a Curb Stomp on Orton onto the steel ring steps, kayfabe injuring him. At Survivor Series on November 23, Rollins captained Team Authority in a five-on-five elimination tag team match against Team Cena, in which Rollins was the sole survivor for his team and the last man eliminated by Dolph Ziggler, resulting in The Authority being ousted from control of WWE. Rollins continued his feud with Cena in December at TLC: Tables, Ladders & Chairs in a tables match, which was won by Cena.
On the January 5, 2015 episode of Raw, The Authority regained control over WWE. Rollins competed in a triple-threat match for the WWE World Heavyweight Championship against Cena and champion Brock Lesnar at the Royal Rumble later that month, which Lesnar won after pinning Rollins. At Fastlane, Rollins, Big Show and Kane defeated the team of Dolph Ziggler, Erick Rowan and Ryback; however after the match Randy Orton returned and attacked Noble, Mercury and Kane, while Rollins fled the arena. After weeks of teasing a reunion with The Authority, Orton eventually attacked Rollins, which led to a match between the two at WrestleMania 31 on March 29, which Rollins lost. Later that night, Rollins cashed in his Money in the Bank contract during Brock Lesnar and Roman Reigns' WWE World Heavyweight Championship match, turning it into a triple threat match and pinned Reigns to win the title for the first time in his career. This made Rollins the first man to cash in his Money in the Bank contract at WrestleMania and during a title match. Rollins continued his feud with Orton after WrestleMania, which led to a steel cage match for the championship with Kane residing as special guest "gatekeeper" at Extreme Rules on April 26, where Rollins retained after interference from the latter. In May, tension rose between Rollins and Kane after the latter scheduled a title defense against Orton and Reigns for Payback. When Ambrose defeated Rollins in a non-title match on the May 4 episode of Raw, he was added to the match, therefore making it a fatal-four-way match which Rollins won after pinning Orton. Rollins then retained the championship against Ambrose on May 31 at Elimination Chamber after getting himself disqualified. Rollins again retained over Ambrose at Money in the Bank in a ladder match.
At Battleground on July 19, Rollins retained the championship by disqualification against Brock Lesnar after The Undertaker interfered and attacked Lesnar. In August, Rollins continued his feud with United States Champion John Cena. He defeated Cena in a Winner Takes All match at SummerSlam on August 23 for both the WWE World Heavyweight and the United States Championships after interference from Jon Stewart. With the win, Rollins became the first and only wrestler to hold both championships simultaneously until he went on to lose the United States Championship back to Cena at Night of Champions on September 20, but was able to retain the WWE World Heavyweight Championship against Sting later that night. On October 25 at Hell in a Cell, Rollins successfully defended the championship against Kane and per the match stipulation, Kane was fired as Director of Operations.
On November 4 during a match against Kane at a WWE live event in Dublin, Ireland, Rollins tore the ACL, MCL and medial meniscus in his knee while attempting to execute a sunset flip powerbomb. The injury required surgery and it was estimated it would take Rollins out of action for approximately six to nine months, therefore he was forced to vacate the WWE World Heavyweight Championship the next day, ending his reign at 220 days. On the December 21 episode of Raw, Rollins made a special appearance to accept his Slammy Award for 2015 Superstar of the Year.
Feud with Triple H (2016-2017)
At Extreme Rules on May 22, 2016, Rollins returned from injury to attack Roman Reigns with a Pedigree after his WWE World Heavyweight Championship defense against AJ Styles. The following night on Raw, Shane McMahon scheduled a match between Reigns and Rollins for the title at Money in the Bank. Meanwhile, multiple wrestling critics and analysts wondered if WWE was "leaving money on the table" by not slotting Rollins as a fan favorite and the negatively received Reigns as a villain. At Money in the Bank on June 19, Rollins defeated Reigns to win his second WWE World Heavyweight Championship, thus also becoming the first wrestler to legitimately defeat Reigns in singles competition on the main roster, only to lose the championship minutes later to Dean Ambrose, who cashed in the Money in the Bank contract he won earlier that night. In July, Rollins failed to regain the renamed WWE Championship from Ambrose multiple times on both Raw and SmackDown. In the 2016 WWE draft on July 19, Rollins was drafted to Raw as the brand's first draft pick. At Battleground on July 24, Rollins unsuccessfully competed in a triple threat match against Ambrose and Reigns for the newly renamed WWE World Championship, which became exclusive to the SmackDown brand. Because of this, the WWE Universal Championship was introduced the following night on Raw. Rollins competed in the inaugural title match against Finn Bálor at SummerSlam on August 21, in which he was defeated by Bálor.
Rollins in May 2017 at a house show. The name Kingslayer on his shirt is in reference to his win over Triple H at WrestleMania 33
After Bálor relinquished the title the following night on Raw due to a legit shoulder injury sustained at SummerSlam, Rollins faced Big Cass, Kevin Owens and Roman Reigns in a four-way elimination match for the title, but Triple H interfered and attacked Rollins, allowing Owens to win the championship. On the September 5 episode of Raw, Rollins attacked Owens during his celebration ceremony, turning face for the first time since 2014. Rollins failed to win the title from Owens at Clash of Champions and Hell in a Cell, due to several interferences from Chris Jericho. At Survivor Series in November, Rollins formed part of Team Raw with Owens, Jericho, Braun Strowman and Roman Reigns in a losing effort to Team SmackDown. The next month at Roadblock: End of the Line, Rollins defeated Jericho.
In January 2017, Rollins started a feud with Triple H leading into WrestleMania. On January 28, Rollins appeared at NXT TakeOver: San Antonio, interrupting the show and demanding to confront Triple H, who came out only to order security to remove Rollins from the ring. On the January 30 episode of Raw, Rollins confronted Stephanie McMahon and once again called out Triple H, demanding answers for his betrayal. Later that night, Rollins was ambushed from behind by the debuting Samoa Joe, who choked him out in the Coquina Clutch. Rollins later signed a contract to compete against Triple H in a non-sanctioned match at WrestleMania 33. Rollins emerged victorious at the event. After WrestleMania, Rollins defeated Samoa Joe at Payback on April 30 to give Joe his first singles loss on the main roster.
At Extreme Rules on June 4, Rollins competed in a fatal five-way Extreme Rules match to determine the number one contender to the WWE Universal Championship also involving Bálor, Joe, Reigns and Wyatt, which was won by Joe.
Rollins and Ambrose successfully defended the titles against Cesaro and Sheamus at No Mercy in September. On the October 9 of Raw, the whole Shield officially reunited to battle The Miz and Miztourage, Cesaro and Sheamus and Braun Strowman, all of whom were common enemies amongst the members. The Shield was then scheduled to compete in their first match as a unit since June 2014, against the team of Strowman, Cesaro, Kane, The Miz and Sheamus on October 22 at TLC in a 5-on-3 handicap Tables, Ladders and Chairs match, but health issues kept Reigns out of action. He was replaced by Kurt Angle. Ambrose, Rollins and Angle went on to win the match. Ambrose and Rollins were scheduled to face SmackDown Tag Team ChampionsThe Usos in a non-title match at Survivor Series, but they lost the title back to Cesaro and Sheamus on the November 6 episode of Raw due to SmackDown's The New Day distracting the champions, ending their reign at 78 days. This led to a match between The Shield and The New Day at Survivor Series on November 19, which The Shield won. In December, Ambrose suffered a torn biceps, sidelining him for approximately nine months, putting The Shield on hiatus.
On the December 25 episode of Raw, Rollins teamed with Jason Jordan and defeated Cesaro and Sheamus to become the new Raw Tag Team Champions. At the Royal Rumble on January 28, Rollins entered at No. 18 in the Royal Rumble match, but he was eliminated by Reigns. Right after the Royal Rumble match, Rollins and Jordan lost the tag team titles to Cesaro and Sheamus, ending their reign at 34 days. Rollins and Jordan's tag team dissolved on February 6 after Jordan had neck surgery.
Ziggler retained against Rollins on several occasions, including in a 30-minute Iron Man match at Extreme Rules after interference from McIntyre, but at SummerSlam, Rollins defeated Ziggler to regain the championship, after enlisting the help of a returning Dean Ambrose. The next on Raw, Rollins reformed The Shield with Ambrose and Roman Reigns, preventing Braun Strowman from cashing in his Money in the Bank contract for the Universal Championship against Reigns. At Hell in a Cell in September, Rollins and Ambrose failed to win the Raw Tag Team Championship from McIntyre and Ziggler. At Super Show-Down on October 6, The Shield defeated McIntyre, Ziggler and Strowman in a six-man tag team match. However, two nights later on Raw, The Shield was defeated by the same trio in a rematch, with Ambrose walking away from his teammates after their defeat.
On the October 22 episode of Raw, Reigns took a hiatus due to his returning leukemia. Later that night, Rollins and Ambrose defeated Ziggler and McIntyre to win the Raw Tag Team Championship (making Rollins a double champion), only for Ambrose to turn on Rollins as he attacked him, igniting a feud between the two and disbanding The Shield once again. Rollins and Ambrose's reign as Raw Tag Team Champions was ended on the November 5 episode of Raw, when Rollins lost a handicap match to AOP (Akam and Rezar). Two weeks later, on November 18, at Survivor Series, Rollins defeated United States Champion Shinsuke Nakamura in an interbrand champion vs. champion match. Towards the end of the year, Rollins continued feuding with Ambrose, which led to a title match on December 16 at the TLC pay-per-view, where Ambrose defeated Rollins and ended his reign at 119 days. Going into 2019, Rollins failed to regain the championship from Ambrose on several occasions, including in a Falls Count Anywhere match when Bobby Lashley interfered, and in a triple threat match in which Lashley won the championship after pinning Ambrose.
On January 27 at the Royal Rumble pay-per-view, Rollins won his first Royal Rumble match by lastly eliminating Braun Strowman. The following night on Raw, Rollins challenged Brock Lesnar for the Universal Championship at WrestleMania 35. Soon after, Rollins reconciled with Ambrose and the recently returned Reigns to reform The Shield for the third time. The trio defeated the team of Drew McIntyre, Bobby Lashley and Baron Corbin at Fastlane. At WrestleMania 35 in April, Rollins defeated Lesnar to win the Universal Championship for the first time.
On the August 19 episode of Raw, Rollins won his record-tying fifth Raw Tag Team Championship along with Braun Strowman when they defeated Karl Anderson and Luke Gallows. At Clash of Champions, Rollins and Strowman lost the titles to the team of Dolph Ziggler and Robert Roode. Later that night, Rollins successfully defended the Universal Championship against Strowman in the main event, but was attacked by "The Fiend" Bray Wyatt after the match. At Hell in a Cell, Rollins defended his title against The Fiend in a Hell in a Cell match that ended in referee stoppage after The Fiend was buried under several weapons and hit with a sledgehammer by Rollins. After that, Rollins was then made captain for Team Hogan at Crown Jewel. However, he was removed when he was then scheduled in a rematch against Wyatt for the Universal Championship in a Falls count anywhere match. At the event, Rollins lost the title to The Fiend ending his second reign at 80 days.
The Messiah (2019-present)
In November, Rollins was selected as the captain for Team Raw at Survivor Series, against Team SmackDown and Team NXT. At the event, Team SmackDown was victorious in the main event match. After this, Rollins turned heel for the first time since 2016, and began dubbing himself as the "Monday Night Messiah" while stating that he was "sacrificing" his opponents for "the greater good". He would also create a faction with AOP (Akam and Rezar) and Buddy Murphy, and the group would attack and brutalize the likes of Rey Mysterio, Samoa Joe and Kevin Owens over the following weeks. Rollins won the Raw Tag Team Championship with Murphy on the January 20, 2020 episode of Raw after defeating The Viking Raiders (Erik and Ivar), becoming a record six-time champion. Rollins competed in the 2020 Royal Rumble match as the final entrant, but was eliminated by the eventual winner Drew McIntyre. Rollins and Murphy successfully defended the tag team championship against The Street Profits (Angelo Dawkins and Montez Ford) at Super ShowDown on February 27, but lost the titles to them on the March 2 episode of Raw. Rollins and Murphy failed to reclaim the championship from the Street Profits at Elimination Chamber six days later. At WrestleMania 36 on April 5, Rollins faced Kevin Owens in No Disqualification match, which Rollins lost.
Following this, Rollins began a rivalry with Drew McIntyre over the WWE Championship, leading to a match between the two at Money in the Bank in May, which Rollins lost. The next night on Raw, Rollins attacked Rey Mysterio and injured his eye with the steel ring steps. On the May 18 episode of Raw, Rollins recruited Austin Theory as a new member of his faction. Mysterio eventually returned and challenged Rollins to an "Eye for an Eye Match" where the only way to win was to extract the opponent's eyeball. The match would take place at The Horror Show at Extreme Rules on July 19, where Rollins was victorious after using the ring steps to remove Mysterio's eye. Over the next coming weeks, Rey Mysterio's son Dominik would confront Rollins about the attacks on both him and his father. At SummerSlam, Rollins defeated Dominik in a Street Fight. The following night on Raw, a tag team match was set up between Rollins and Murphy against Rey and Dominik Mysterio at Payback. At the event, Rollins and Murphy were defeated by Rey and Dominik.
On the October 5 episode of Raw, Murphy attacked Rollins after he refused to apologize to him thus ending their alliance. As part of the 2020 WWE draft in October, Rollins was drafted to the SmackDownbrand. On the November 20 episode of SmackDown, Rollins was defeated by Murphy to end the feud. At Survivor Series, Rollins competed in the Survivor Series match as part of Team SmackDown, but he was the first person eliminated by Sheamus after "sacrificing" himself. His team would also go on to lose the match. Following this, Rollins would go on paternity leave for the birth of his first child.
Professional wrestling style, persona and reception
Rollins performing his finishing move the Curb Stomp on Big E in September 2014
Part of his WWE ring name is a tribute to former Black Flag singer Henry Rollins. During his time in FCW, Rollins used a superkick to a kneeling opponent called Avada Kedavra as a finisher. Rollins has known to use his current and most notable finisher, the Curb Stomp (often referred to as simply the Stomp), for most of his career. However, Rollins was prohibited from using the Curb Stomp shortly after his WWE World Heavyweight Championship victory at WrestleMania 31 in March 2015, as WWE chairman Vince McMahon thought it was a "cruel" move for their top champion. However, Rollins resumed use of the move in January 2018. During the interim time, he adopted Triple H's Pedigree as his finishing maneuver to replace the Curb Stomp. In April 2017, he introduced a new finishing move, a jumping knee strike called the Ripcord Knee.
Throughout his time as a member of The Shield, before the team initially dispersed, his character was that of an "out-spoken hot-head who will do crazy things" to help The Shield. After turning into a villain and aligning himself with AOP in late-2019, Rollins began to dub himself "Monday Night Messiah" and allude himself to Jesus while debuting a new entrance theme to go along with the new character. He also began recruiting new "disciples" into his group such as Murphy and Austin Theory proclaiming himself to be their leader and savior.
In mid-2019, Rollins received attention for his social media activities and public comments. In June, Rollins received criticism for his interaction with fellow wrestler Will Ospreay on Twitter, who Rollins referenced as "little guy" and urged to "compare bank accounts" with him; he apologized in early July, calling the tweets "garbage" and "not in line with my values". He later publicly called wrestler Jon Moxley (who had performed in WWE as Dean Ambrose) "presumptuous" for criticizing WWE following his departure from the company, as well as regarding professional wrestling promotion All Elite Wrestling (where Moxley went to compete after his departure from WWE) as the "minor leagues". In November, Rollins publicly refuted a story published by the Wrestling Observer Newsletter (WON) that claimed that he spoke during a backstage meeting prior to an episode of Raw. The publication later issued a retraction and an apology to Rollins.
In the same year, Rollins' character notably drew criticisms from audiences and critics, particularly after he retained the Universal Championship over "The Fiend" Bray Wyatt via referee stoppage at the Hell in a Cell event in October of that year, which was received negatively by the live crowd and also by critics. Sports journalist Dave Meltzer, who is known for assigning star ratings to wrestling matches, rated the match minus 2 stars out of 5, making it among the lowest rated matches he has reviewed. Meltzer also described it as "perhaps the worst main event in pro wrestling history where the fault doesn't at all lie in either of the competitors".Bleacher Report subsequently stated that the negative reaction was a response against "a character that has become too bland, one-dimensional and unlikable for fans to continue supporting." Following Rollins' villainous character change shortly after his feud with Wyatt, the New York Post hypothesized that "WWE had no choice but to turn Seth Rollins heel", even though it "doesn't absolve WWE from blame for needing to make the switch". Rollins' match against Wyatt at Hell in a Cell was later recognized as the Worst Match of the Year by readers of the Wrestling Observer Newsletter, with their feud also being named Worst Feud of the Year. The Hell in a Cell match was also awarded the Gooker Award by satirical wrestling website WrestleCrap, an annual booby prize dedicated to the worst wrestling moment of the year.
Rollins is regularly featured on Xavier Woods' YouTube channel UpUpDownDown, where he goes by the nickname 'The Champ'. In August 2019, Rollins won a #1 contender's tournament to challenge Samoa Joe for the UpUpDownDown Championship. He defeated Joe in a game of Track & Field II to win the championship. In October, in his first and only defense, Rollins lost the championship to Becky Lynch in Marvel vs. Capcom: Infinite.
In 2014, Lopez and his former tag team partner Marek Brave started The Black & The Brave Wrestling Academy, a professional wrestling school in Moline. In February 2019, Lopez opened a coffee shop called 329 Dport in his hometown of Davenport, Iowa.
On February 9, 2015, a nude photo of former NXT wrestler Zahra Schreiber, reportedly Lopez's girlfriend, was posted to his social media accounts, the contents of which are automatically republished by WWE.com. Soon after, nude photos of Lopez were posted on the Twitter page of his then-fiancée, Leighla Schultz. In response, Lopez apologized for "private photographs that were distributed without [his] consent". On February 25, 2016, Lopez revealed that he had broken up with Schreiber, but did not say what caused the split.
After months of speculation, it was confirmed on May 13, 2019, that Lopez was in a relationship with fellow WWE wrestler Rebecca Quin, better known as Becky Lynch. WWE subsequently acknowledged the relationship on their website. The couple announced their engagement on August 22, 2019.
On September 10, 2019, Lopez found out that he had a brother and a sister after taking a DNA test.
On May 11, 2020, it was announced on Raw that Lopez and Quin are expecting their first child together. On December 4, Quin and Lopez welcomed their first daughter, named Roux.
^Asher, Matthew. "Raw: Bryan's road through Hell continues". SLAM! Wrestling. Archived from the original on July 5, 2015. Retrieved 2013. It appears as though The Shield is now Triple H's lackeys as they open tonight's Raw as makeshift bodyguards (Jerry Lawler called them "henchmen") for The Game as he makes his way to the ring.