Talk about thinking ahead. We haven't even had WrestleMania 28 yet, and talk has already turned to what will be the main event for next year's show on April 7, 2013.
In this week's Wrestling Observer Newsletter, Dave Meltzer gives a major update on the company's plans. He notes that the WWE intends to once again announce the main event a year ahead of time, and he also mentions some of the big names being talked about for the show, which takes emanates from the MetLife Stadium in East Rutherford, N.J.
Right now they want to come up with next year’s Mania main event and announce it within a few weeks, most likely on the Raw after Mania. The belief is the Raw after Mania will be the highest rated episode of the year (good chance that's the case even with the disappointing ratings of late). Right now they are talking about Cena, Rock, Austin and Undertaker as the potential key guys for next year's show, or at least as the guys to potentially put in the main event.
Certainly, announcing Cena/Rock the night after WrestleMania 27 (where Rock attacked Cena and cost him his title match with The Miz) has helped build up more fan anticipation and interest in the bout than if, say, they had announced the match in January or February of this year.
However, whether or not setting their plans in stone a year ahead of time would work again remains to be seen.
Indeed, there would be many variables to consider this time around (e.g., what if Austin was offered a dream role in Hollywood he felt he couldn't turn down, what if the worn-down and ailing Undertaker isn't physically well enough to compete, etc.).
Meltzer then goes on to to analyze the chances of Austin being willing to do the show:
Austin was not committed to the show. Austin will be 48 at the time of the show and I have no doubt for one match he could do it, but the hourglass of time for him to make one big Mania comeback is starting to run thin.
Austin, who retired in 2003 due to serious neck problems and has been pursuing various Hollywood acting roles, has long been talked about for a return match in the organization.
While we can only speculate, the most likely candidate for Austin's return match would undoubtedly be current WWE champion CM Punk, whom Austin has frequently teased as having a major match with in various interviews over the past year.