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WWE NEWS: Loaded Raw TV Dallas preview - WM29 main event implications, Lesnar advertised, McMahon returning for a "fight," how will WWE handle Swagger post-DUI?, more

Feb 25, 2013 - 3:30:42 AM
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By James Caldwell, PWTorch assistant editor

CrowdRaw20_3_6.jpg



WWE has loaded up this week's three-hour WWE Raw episode from Dallas, Texas. WWE is viewing Monday's Raw as a chance to strongly kick off the WrestleMania 29 hard-sell about six weeks away from the PPV.

In-play for Raw:

- John Cena vs. C.M. Punk "One More Time" where the winner advances to face WWE champion The Rock at WM29. Cena is putting up his Royal Rumble match victory against Punk, who Cena was unable to beat during Punk's one-year-plus title reign.

- Mr. McMahon is returning to TV after a brief absence to sell the effects of Brock Lesnar delivering an FU. McMahon is advertised to "fight" Paul Heyman.

- Brock Lesnar is advertised for this week's Raw, and is expected to get involved in the McMahon-Heyman business. Whether it also brings back Triple H and/or The Undertaker, who returned to WWE at a house show over the weekend, remains to be seen.

- WWE champion The Rock is not scheduled for this week's show. Rock is advertised for next week, but Lesnar is not, continuing a pattern of Lesnar and Rock rotating Raws.

- One of the big questions for Raw is how WWE handles Jack Swagger (Jake Hager). Hager is five days removed from an arrest for allegedly driving under the influence, speeding, and possessing marijuana. WWE has yet to formally comment on the arrest, which was believed to be because they would run an angle on television before addressing it. This is the first live TV episode since Hager's arrest.

Also in-play related to Swagger and his manager, Zeb Colter, is how WWE will handle conservative commentator Glenn Beck turning down an "invitation" to appear on Raw from Dallas, where Beck resides. Beck offered a one-line response to the invite: "Unfortunately I am currently booked doing anything else."

It's worth noting that WWE has a history of childish responses when WWE goes for mainstream publicity and someone turns down an overture to get involved.

- Related to The Shield, there is not a clear path to WrestleMania for the trio, but they picked up two clean, impressive victories over top face teams last week at Elimination Chamber and the post-PPV Raw.

- Chris Jericho is not scheduled for Raw due to his current international tour with "Fozzy."

- Rey Mysterio is advertised for Raw. Other stars advertised include World Hvt. champion Alberto Del Rio, Big Show, Randy Orton, Sheamus, Ryback, WWE tag champions Kane & Daniel Bryan, Dolph Ziggler & Big E. Langston & A.J. Lee, IC champion Wade Barrett, U.S. champion Antonio Cesaro, Cody Rhodes, and Layla.

Torch Reader Alert: We're looking for a correspondent at the TV taping. Email us at pwtorch@gmail.com if you plan to attend.


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