Potential returns dominate the latest WWE rumors, with word of Shane McMahon and Rob Van Dam coming back to the company circulating the Internet.
Backstage reports and buzz give fans reason to expect that those men—along with Jonathan Coachman—will be back in different capacities. In addition, Ultimate Warrior, who is set to enter the WWE Hall of Fame on April 5, is reportedly the subject of hostility from the locker room.
WrestleMania and the Raw immediately following it have often been the sight for memorable returns. That could prove true again this year, beginning with a member of the McMahon family who has not been near a WWE ring in a long while.
Another McMahon at WrestleMania?
Vince McMahon has slipped away from the spotlight as his daughter has taken charge onscreen with Triple H. The latest word is that Vince's son may reenter the WWE scene come Sunday.
According to F4WOnline (h/t Marc Middleton of Wrestling Inc), "There's a feeling within WWE that Shane McMahon will be backstage at WrestleMania XXX."
What that entails exactly is unknown for now. Backstage could mean hanging around the Superstars and shaking hands or it could mean appearing in some kind of segment. Fans will be rooting for the latter.
McMahon, the former CEO of You on Demand, hasn't been involved with WWE since resigning in 2010.
Rob Van Dam Returning?
His fans were certainly hoping for him to get a spot on the WrestleMania XXX card, but the wait for Van Dam to make another WWE run will apparently be short.
According to the Wrestling Observer Newsletter (h/t Chris Cash of Wrestle Zone), Van Dam is scheduled to return the night after WrestleMania. The report also notes that he will sign on for a few months' worth of work.
His return in 2013 led to a number of standout matches. The high-flyer belied his age with agile, speedy and inspired performances.
With Brad Maddox entering the Andre the Giant Memorial Battle Royal at WrestleMania, that leaves just three spots to grab. Even with word of Van Dam coming back post-WrestleMania, fans have been speculating that he will take one of those spots as a surprise entrant.
The Coach Coming Back?
"The Coach" appears to be coming back to WWE, at least on a part-time basis. Coachman went from singing "Copacabana" to doing SportsCenter, but one report has him returning to his WWE roots.
The Wrestling Observer Newsletter (h/t Marc Middleton of Wrestling Inc) writes the following:
WWE looks to be either close to or has just signed a new deal with former announcer and current ESPN personality Jonathan Coachman. The two sides have been discussing a part-time gig where Coach would keep his ESPN job but would do in-studio wrap-arounds for WWE. One idea thrown out would be for him to host a WWE talk show for the WWE Network.
The hints of this being true are plentiful. WWE.com featured Coachman on a recent "Where Are They Now?" piece and put up his entrance video on YouTube. That smells like prepping fans for him coming back.
Coachman himself hinted at some sort of relationship with the sports entertainment giant:
Hey all you @wwe fans. Have a really cool announcement in the next month or so about something happening this summer. Stand by.— Jonathan Coachman (@TheCoachESPN) March 25, 2014
His ESPN experience and pedigree would bring an added dimension of realism to the product. A potential Coach return is not as thrilling as having Jim Ross call matches again, but he would be a fun addition.
Heat on The Ultimate Warrior?
There are a number of reasons to celebrate the 2014 Hall of Fame class, from it completing a story of redemption for both Scott Hall and Jake Roberts to Paul Bearer's memory being honored.
It appears that not everyone is happy with all the inductees, though.
As reported by the Wrestling Observer Newsletter (h/t Marc Middleton of Wrestling Inc), "There is said to be a lot of negativity among some veterans regarding WWE inducting The Ultimate Warrior into the Hall of Fame this year."
That's not surprising in the least, as WWE's first Ultimate Warrior DVD took a number of shots at him. Triple H called him "unprofessional." Bobby Heenan said he was "dangerous."
Those at the top of the WWE have clearly mended the relationship with the former WWE champ, as seen by his Hall of Fame bid, inclusion in WWE 2K14 and the release of a new DVD.
Even so, perhaps there are still wrestlers who harbor bad feelings about him—something that the outspoken Warrior probably won't let bother him.
He has a Hall of Fame induction to focus on, whether everyone likes it or not.