After a long and lazy two weeks of taped RAWS we finally go live once again. The past couple of Monday night shows have basically been filler whilst the creative department eat lots of turkey and frolic on New Year’s Eve. Hopefully they’ve been able to scratch a few ideas on some napkins along the way for the run up to the Royal Rumble. I may be being hopeful but I’m expecting a RAW to kick us in the teeth.
For many this RAW will be exciting if only for the fact that Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson is making his “Return” to WWE. It will be interesting where about on the show WWE will place him, but I would expect they will hype him for the first hour and he’ll cut a promo and talk about stupid goose bumps at the opening of the second hour. It’s obvious his main points will involve Punk and the Title. I hope they keep a Punk retort back for a time after a show where Punk could potentially lose the belt but I doubt it. It will be interesting to see whether Rock gets involved in the TLC match however I would say it’s very unlikely as who would it affect more considering it’s highly unlikely that Ryback will win the belt.
We will also see much more emphasis placed on the Rumble match itself now that the three top faces of the company are involved. Cena, Orton and Sheamus will each make their case at some point along with adding fuel to the Orton / Sheamus fire ignited on Smackdown! Cena will be the Royal Rumble programme leading up to the event so to speak and all emphasis and build will be centred on him. Expect more names to officially enter the Rumble tonight as well.
The World heavyweight Championship feud which looks as though it may involve Alberto Del Rio could make any number of turns tonight. Considering Big Show is one of the top heels, I can see creative pushing ADR into a more fan friendly mould. By no means am I saying a face turn, but more sympathy or crowd support will come his way.
The main event of CM Punk vs. Ryback will finally go ahead on RAW. I can only assume that they have held on to this match to actually go ahead as they have a very specific idea in where they want this to go with it, otherwise I’m sure they would have forgotten all about it after the actual TLC event. Will we see Punk finally align himself with The Shield, will The Rock cost either man the title OR perhaps Punk had some really nice spots planned that he just had to use! Unlikely as WWE won’t want Punk injured now ‘Mania season is up and running.
Of course we will likely see the US, Intercontinental and Tag title feuds build from tonight. This has the potential to be quite an interesting RAW after the Christmas and New Year breaks. Considering the past 2 weeks have been awful, this had better have some talking points.
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This article was first posted on January 7, 2013