On the surface, it may seem like the WWE has been in a holding pattern for the past week due to the holiday season and pre-taped shows, but fans should know by now that nothing can slow down the WWE machine when it comes to making headlines.
The in-ring action was largely unimportant and predictable; however, there is plenty going on behind the scenes that promises to have a major impact on the product moving forward. Fans are already well-aware that The Rock is set to return in a little over a week, but it turns out that he'll be making even more appearances than originally thought.
That includes a few episodes of Raw and a pair of SmackDowns to boot. The Rock will almost assuredly be facing CM Punk for the WWE Championship at Royal Rumble, but Punk is scheduled to defend his title against Ryback first. Whether or not the latter bout actually happens is anyone's guess, though.
In addition to that, one of the most popular tag teams in WWE history is working the house show circuit and could return to WWE programming. Also, ratings are in for a couple key WWE shows, and the early returns aren't good.
Here are all the latest news stories and rumors regarding the WWE for the week beginning on Dec. 23.