WWE: 10 Monday Night Raw Storylines Fans Needs to See in 2013
2013 has begun, and the pre-taped episodes of Raw are a thing of the past.
Now is the time to start imagining where WWE will take its universe in the coming months.
There are a lot of stories to follow as we speak, and with the road to WrestleMania about to begin, things will only get better and more exciting.
With all the comings and goings this company sees, there should be many interesting speculations in the coming months, which means many, many potential storyline twists.
Monday Night Raw is a huge show, three hours of drama and delicious action.
What should the loyal fan look for this year?
The Punk vs. Rock Saga
Perhaps the biggest story the WWE will see in 2013—and right at the beginning too!
CM Punk has been the WWE champion for so long now, it's to wonder how and when he will be dethroned.
His greatest challenge to date will come at the Royal Rumble when he is set to face none other than the "Great One" himself, The Rock.
This may very well be the match of the year, as both Rock and Punk are masters of their craft.
All the promos, the stare downs, the cheap shots and eventual matches will take the WWE Universe to the limits of its imagination, and the show will be downright excellent.
While the "Brahma Bull" seems to be the favorite to win this, no one should count out the "Best in the World" just yet. A long championship reign like this has its value, and carrying it over to WrestleMania XXIX is something fantastic to consider.
Monday Night Raw is live tomorrow night, Jan. 7. Will fans get a preview of this? Is The Rock going to make his presence felt?
One thing is for sure: CM Punk will be there, title firmly around waist and with Paul Heyman the mouthpiece as well.
Morality vs. Degeneration
The tag team division has greatly improved in the last year or so, and with Hell No! as champions, the WWE Universe has been treated to much merriment.
However, the alliance between Cody Rhodes and Damien Sandow is what people should pay attention to.
They will win the titles—believe it.
Reasons for that could be because of the recent return of the New Age Outlaws on television.
This theme is perfect in advance. Morals and intelligence taking on mischief and degeneration. Should the writers decide to book this, they would have a winning combination right there.
Just the promos would be enough to sell this program. Cody, Damien, Billy and Road Dogg are very good on the mic, and pitting them against each other seems like a natural thing. It would be swift, sharp and would flow as smoothly as buttah!
It this gets to WrestleMania, as it should, then it is safe to expect some sort of stipulation to their match. A dumpster match maybe? Or TLC?
Whatever it is, this is surely going to be one of the highlights of the card, provided it happens of course.
Vote now: Scholars vs. Outlaws 2013.
Dolph Ziggler and His Money
Dolph Ziggler must be the one of fastest rising and most talked about Superstar in WWE right now.
Every week he continues to impress by delivering great promos and nonstop action.
Now with AJ Lee and Langston by his side, who knows what craziness awaits. Despite his villainous nature, he receives quite the adulation from the crowd, especially when he attempted to cash in his MITB on Big Show a few weeks ago.
It's somewhat of a good thing John Cena stopped him: It put all the crowd's heat on him. At this point, no one really knows when he will officially cash in, and that makes Ziggler one of the hottest commodities in the company.
He can wait until the month of July if he wants to, right until the end of the contractual year. Imagine the suspense that would create.
2012 was a marquee year for the "Show-Off." He battled many top names, including CM Punk, John Cena and Randy Orton. That trend must carry on into 2013 if he wishes to be a top guy. He must not only face the best but defeat them all.
The Rumble is right around the corner, so is The Miz, who seems to want some measure of revenge. Could a great showdown be that far away? Who of these young guns will prevail?
This Superstar could very well be on his way to a Shawn Michaels-like career. Though in his own way, there are interesting similarities between the two: Both are athletic, good looking and incredibly arrogant—it's almost a mirror image.
Like Hansel in Zoolander, Dolph Ziggler is so hot right now.
AJ Lee Equals Crazy
The next few months should be very intense, and the WWE Universe will get a crazy dose of action on the road to WrestleMania XXIX.
Speaking of crazy, what is up with the resident nutcase, AJ Lee?
First she is a goodie-goodie, then dumps D. Bryan, meddles with Punk, goes for Kane then Cena and now Ziggler? Yes, I'd like to order some Lithium please.
The company seems to be very high on this chick. She is thrust into the spotlight like no other Diva is and has all sorts of fans out there.
Personally, I do not like her character because I feel her acting isn't really credible. I don't "feel" her emotions like the others. It's as if she tries too much; however, I am no fool, she is one character to watch out for this year.
She may not be ready for a Divas Championship match at Mania, let's say, because of the "heel" vs. "heel" thing, but she could very well pick up the butterfly once someone else pins Eve Torres.
Dolph not trusting her would be wise. She could screw him out of his World Championship just because he'd refuse to kiss her or something. That is the power of such a wild creature. You never know what she could do if you cross her.
AJ Lee is indeed a powerful woman when you think about it: She managed to get the WWE Universe to feel sympathy for Vickie Guerrero, even for a second. I...never...thought...I'd...see...the...day!
Who else's body will she be skipping around in 2013? Whenever she is around, people get hurt.
Could it be Ruthless Aggression, AJ style?
Eve Torres: The Divas Title and WrestleMania?
When was the last time the Women's/Divas Championship was defended at the biggest show of the year?
It has been too long, yes, Melina taking on Ashley Massaro at WrestleMania 23.
There have been countless ways to have a decent ladies program at the show of shows, but this company keeps its eyes shut every time.
Whether it be Beth Phoenix and Natalya, Beth Phoenix vs. Kharma or any other champion doesn't matter. Nothing ever happens because they are just too scared to let the world know women can do just as well as the men any day of the week.
Eve Torres is a fantastic Divas champion: She is conniving, treacherous, vain and so beautiful, they just have to put her on the card.
Her reign will be a long one because, frankly, there is no one to challenge her except Natalya. It will happen alright, and maybe at WrestleMania, but whatever happens, here's to Eve Torres being so "bad" she unearths a challenger no one expects.
Sara Del Rey or Kharma, that's who this writer has in mind. The Divas Division is on its way up with Torres and with all the changes happening under the rule of Triple H and Stephanie—no one should discard these amazing girls.
There will be a title match at Mania this year. They invested a lot in their champion so far, and it would be a crying shame to dismiss a great program.
WWE writers better hear this loud and clear: no Maria Menounos, no Sn00ki, no Pussycat Dolls!
Fans want real action, nice spots and a minimum of 10 minutes in the ring!
The Turn of Randy Orton?
For the sake of all that is right in the world, may Randy Orton get his wish and turn to the dark side at long last.
His character has fallen behind others like Sheamus and Co. over the last year, and it is time for "The Viper" to strike and take back the mantle of "face of SmackDown."
Being a villain suits him far more. A bad guy can get just as many cheers from the crowd as any hero in WWE. That's the way the business works. Look at WWE champion CM Punk: People still worship him despite his calling them trash and rejects.
Who knows, he could revive one of his old factions and rule the world again or maybe create a whole new gang of bullies.
Some people play certain character types way better than others. Randy Orton is a natural-born killer of Superstars. His eyes radiate evil and his body, with all those tattoos, make him look like an agent of darkness, so why not go with it since it seems to be so easy.
There are good "faces" for him to terrorize, rising stars who need a top name to help push them to the very top.
Who wouldn't love another great showdown between him and Kofi Kingston or, somewhere down the road, against Sheamus.
If The Rock sticks around for SummerSlam, this could be a major angle to go with as well.
No matter what, Randy Orton will go through some major changes this year. He will also regain a World Championship. It has been a while, and it is preferable to John Cena, unless he too turns to the dark side of the WWE force.
They don't call him the "Apex Predator" for nothing after all.
The "face" of the WWE, Captain Crunch, Fruitty Pebbles himself, John Cena has been on a roller-coaster ride for months now.
In a title match or not, he constantly main events shows, but unlike previous years, he has been losing a few battles.
His character is in dire need of a refreshing change. It is always the same dance with him. He makes dumb jokes and puts down his opponents as if they are no threat, and then fans are supposed to believe in their matches.
His merchandise may sell, but how many more of the same shirt and cap can one kid have? The wording and color may be modified, but it is the same thing!
There seems to be more and more boos heard from the crowd week after week, which could eventually take its toll on Captain America, character-wise that is. Hulk Hogan revived his entire career years ago when he turned. No one ever believed it could happen, yet it did.
Can the same fate be reserved for this child-worshipped larger-than-life personage?
The last thing this one needs is another transitional WWE Championship or World Championship reign on his resume.
Company writers should think outside the box with this one. He is going to be with us for a long, long time.
Possibilities are almost endless.
Brock Lesnar, the Rock and Other Returns
2012 has been a star-studded year in WWE.
Brock Lesnar, The Rock, Mick Foley, Ric Flair—Oh my!
All these characters served to make programming all that more fantastic, and the company truly lives up to its moniker: Anything can happen.
The Royal Rumble draws near. The Rock is set to battle CM Punk for the WWE Championship, which will surely be a strong candidate for Match of the Year, but what about the big Battle Royal itself?
Who will be the surprise entrant this year and who will cost who the victory?
All four names above will be involved in some sort of program come WrestleMania, but others may very well join in the great dance. Stone Cold Steve Austin is on top of that list. He would fit in so well too, whether against Punk or Orton.
For the record, having big names of yore around doesn't take anything away from the future stars. It adds spice to the mix and helps put over the next generation. Seeing Brock Lesnar or whomever from eras past makes the longtime fans relive some great memories and remind them why they love WWE in the first place.
In reading articles on Bleacher Report and other news sites, some interesting names pop up as well: John Morrison, Shelton Benjamin, MVP, Christian, Evan Bourne, etc, etc, etc. The Royal Rumble is the perfect door for them to burst through and make quite the impact.
This is the most interesting time in the WWE year. Between January and May, all the best stories happen, all newsworthy returns occur.
There is definite change in the air. One can smell and feel it all round.
The Undertaker's Next Victim
The grandest stage of them all, the show of shows, the reason why WWE lives to this day.
All the money and the marbles are invested in that one night of the year where magic happens. History is made, and it is the best four hours this company has to offer.
Certainly, what has helped make this event must-see is the legendary streak of The Undertaker.
It stands at 20-0.
All have fallen before the might of the prince of darkness. Triple H, Shawn Michaels, Edge, none have the power to stop him, but this year, this year may be the greatest challenge yet.
Who could it be?
There are those who would go with Brock Lesnar, whose wrath may be unstoppable should he return. Could it be The Rock? The "Great One" is indeed just that, great, and who is greater than he is? None other than the Phenom, The Undertaker.
A match pitting either of these legends against the Undertaker would be historical. It would never be forgotten, as it truly would be once in a lifetime.
My personal pick: CM Punk vs. The Undertaker, Streak for Title. The best in the world and his long title reign facing a force that has defeated him in the past.
If Punk beats Taker, then truly he is the best. But if it is the other way around, the most intriguing dynamic would occur, as the fate of the title would be uncertain.
People would be glued to the television set for months.
No matter where WWE decides to go with the man from the dark side, there is no true WrestleMania without him and his streak.
Long life to The Undertaker and may he take reign supreme for years to come.
Raw's 20th Anniversary and All the Trimmings
January 14, 2013.
Marked down in any true WWE fan's calendar, of course, is the 20th anniversary of the company's flagship program: Monday Night Raw.
For years it has been the show to stay up for in all of professional wrestling. So many moments were shared and history has been made countless times.
This year should be no exception.
In one night, so many things can happen. Stone Cold or HBK return, a new title belt can be revealed and Dolph Ziggler could cash in the MITB.
Fragile hearts may want to avoid watching in case a fatal heart attack from all this excitement could occur.
It will set the stage for most major events happening this year. They will talk about this episode until SummerSlam no doubt.
Fans don't have to lose patience—it is next week after all, and time flies when you are having fun.
Though this show may not be a storyline in itself, it will spawn many. It will be the gathering place of all positive WWE energies for 2013 and beyond, as the concept of the show itself may change from here on out.
No one should miss this. Anyone who's anyone will be there.
13 Is a Lucky Number
Tomorrow's Monday Night Raw show is live!
The Rock will be there.
Who said 13 is bad luck? This year has the potential to be one of the best ones ever, as all this magic has yet to happen.
Just sticking to any of these possible angles will surely bring in the numbers and make everyone happy.
Again, anything can happen in WWE, and it starts tomorrow, Jan. 7, at 8 p.m. ET sharp!
Bring out the pom-poms!