Universal Champion Brock Lesnar Returns; Preview for March 18 Episode of WWE Raw

Erik Beaston@@ErikBeastonFeatured ColumnistMarch 18, 2019

Credit: WWE.com

With just three weeks until WWE presents WrestleMania 35 in East Rutherford, New Jersey, Raw hits the USA Network airwaves Monday with a loaded show that includes the return of universal champion Brock Lesnar and a women's championship defense by Ronda Rousey.

The loaded show will have plenty of WrestleMania implications, as the company continues to build the most important card of its calendar year.

What announcements will be made and what in-ring action can fans expect to see Monday? Find out with this preview of the broadcast.


The Beast Is Back and Seth Rollins is in Action

Thus far, the majority of the build to the Universal Championship match between Brock Lesnar and Seth Rollins has been focused on The Architect and Paul Heyman's back-and-forth promos.

For the first time since the post-Royal Rumble episode of Raw, Lesnar returns Monday night to add some hype and heat to his upcoming championship defense against 2019 Rumble winner Rollins.

The Beast Incarnate was last seen obliterating his No. 1 contender with a number of F-5s, sending a painful message loudly and clearly to The Architect.

Having waited almost two months, what rebuttal will the self-proclaimed Beastslayer have in store for the universal champion?

Will their altercation become physical or will it follow the pattern of the build to this point, relying on promos to put over the match?

Considering the infrequency with which Lesnar appears, it would behoove WWE to make the absolute most of this appearance and give Rollins some momentum and, more importantly, fans the impression that he can actually do damage to The Beast with a red-hot, physical angle Monday night. 

Speaking of Rollins, he will seek revenge for the brutal assault his friend and Shield partner Dean Ambrose endured last week when he battles Drew McIntyre in singles action.

Will he even be able to survive The Scottish Psychopath's onslaught to confront Lesnar?


Kurt Angle Announces Farewell Opponent

WWE Hall of Famer Kurt Angle announced his farewell match would take place at WrestleMania, and Monday, The Olympic Gold Medalist will reveal the Superstar who will share the squared circle with him in East Rutherford, New Jersey on April 7.

There has been plenty of speculation as to who the multiple-time WWE champion will face.

The Undertaker and John Cena are among the most popular options, thanks to the fact neither has a match already slated for the show. The re-emergence of Shelton Benjamin a week ago provides another option, though he does not have the star power one would expect for such a high-profile bout.

We will find out Monday just who will battle Angle at The Showcase of the Immortals and, perhaps more importantly, whether Cena and Taker should be expected at an event they have become synonymous with over the years.


Ronda Rousey Defends the Raw Women's Championship

A week ago, Dana Brooke walked to the ring and confronted Ronda Rousey, showing no fear as she demanded an opportunity at the top prize in women's wrestling. She endured a brutal beating at the hands of Rowdy, one that left her battered and bruised but unwilling to go away.

Monday night, Brooke will challenge Rousey for the title, just weeks before The Baddest Woman on the Planet is set to square off with Becky Lynch and Charlotte Flair in the main event of WrestleMania.

The likelihood of Brooke dethroning her opponent is nonexistent, but that does not mean she won't seize the opportunity to try to deliver a performance that earns the attention and trust of WWE officials in hopes of receiving a push in the aftermath of WrestleMania.

Expect Lynch and Flair to appear, intensifying their rivalry with Rousey and ensuring fans remains invested and excited for the headline match at The Showcase of the Immortals.


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