It’s time to bring back the daily news updates. Things were a bit hectic in the last two months of the year, but we’re back to normal now and I should be able to get these posts up prior to 12pmET every weekday going forward. I may end up skipping it sometimes because that’s life, but I know I can keep up with it as long as I plan things better.
Tonight’s edition of Raw comes from one of my favorite cities in America, New Orleans. There are no matches announced although Brock Lesnar and Paul Heyman are back tonight. Why don’t they announce matches beforehand? On the WWE.com preview for the show, these are the talking points.
* Whatever Lesnar has in store will be must-see
* Reigns prepares for the fight of his life
* Is a U.S. Title Match in Kalisto’s future?
* The carnage continues between Ambrose and Owens
* Will Becky get payback against the Flairs?
The final three points are in reference to Smackdown, which I reviewed here. Kalisto beat Del Rio clean in a non-title match, so it could lead to a US Title match at the Royal Rumble. Ambrose/Owens had a great brawl to end Smackdown, so they could be announced for a Rumble singles match that is Falls Count Anywhere or something that will allow brawling. Then there’s poor Becky Lynch, who continually gets booked like an idiot. It’s probably leading to another title match at the Rumble.
This is also the first Raw after John Cena’s shoulder surgery. I assume they’ll show pics of him having the surgery because they posted them on WWE.com last week as well.
I’m not going to see Raw live because I’ll be at a neighbour’s house watching the NCAA college football finals between Alabama and Clemson. I’m going to try to write live most weeks because it’s better, but I won’t be home tonight. Look for the Raw Deal in the AM.
The Raw ratings will take a hit from the college football game, which should top 20 million viewers if it’s a close game. I’m going Alabama for the win, for what it’s worth.
Randy Orton Return Update
On Saturday, I did a news post about Randy Orton going on Instagram to explain his current status in WWE. He mentioned that he had his shoulder surgery on December 8 and that he definitely won’t need neck surgery. He noted Dave Meltzer saying that he would neck surgery. I think he misinterpreted it because there concerns that he may need neck surgery, but then it turns out that he’ll be back to come back without it.
Then I listened to Meltzer’s radio show where he noted that back in November there were people like Ric Flair going on his podcast saying Orton might need neck surgery. I know that’s true because I heard it when Flair had a podcast with Jeff Hardy and I think he mentioned it with others as well.
Anyway, to wrap it all up the expected return date for Orton is anywhere from mid-March to mid-May, which means his recovery time is 4-6 months. If he is ready in March then perhaps he’ll be in a WrestleMania match on April 3. It’s certainly a possibility.
In Other News
– WWE is announcing the first WWE Hall of Fame inductee for 2016 at about 1pmET on WWE.com, so there will probably be a video package for that person on the show. They broke the news on their Twitter and Facebook accounts.
— WWE (@WWE) January 11, 2016
Just to update this, it was announced that it was Sting and we have more info on that here.
The 2016 WWE Hall of Fame Induction Ceremony will take place Saturday, April 2, 2016 from the American Airlines Center in Dallas, Texas. Presale tickets start on Wednesday and tickets to the general public on sale on Friday. Here’s the link to Ticketmaster.
– Finn Balor talks about WWE bringing in some of his buddies from NJPW very soon. My feeling is that if they are openly talking about it on WWE.com it’s pretty much a done deal. Our new guy Mark has the details here.
– Kevin Owens did a quick interview talking about The Undertaker, Shinsuke Nakamura coming to WWE and Brock Lesnar. He wants to fight all of them of course because that’s what he should say. Rob has that interview here.
Read Our Stuff
Here’s a summary from some of our writing content in the last few days.
– Smackdown was a great show this week with two title matches with ending that will allow those feuds to continue and here’s my detailed review on it. I’ll write about it weekly going forward.
– Hank McAllen has some ideas to make WrestleMania a great card with some amazing matches. I’m not sure if his ideas are that likely, but at least he put some thought into them and they would be awesome to watch.
– Here’s my article on Awful Announcing praising Mauro Ranallo on Smackdown as well as the return of heel Jerry Lawler on the show as well. I can’t post it here because it’s exclusive to AA, but I hope you check it out.
– Did you check out our TJRWrestling staff predictions column for 2016 yet? Biggest column of the year. Proud of the team.
As I mentioned earlier, no live Raw Deal for me tonight, but I should have it up pretty early on Tuesday morning.
That’s all for now. Have a great week, my friends.