There are going to be a lot of legendary WWE superstars appearing at the special Monday Night Live 25 special next week on the USA Network. The WWE will celebrate 25 years on the air, and many of the superstars that made the show must-watch television for over two decades will show up to entertain the fans. Already, the WWE announced names like Stone Cold Steve Austin, “The Heartbreak Kid” Shawn Michaels, The Undertaker, The Dudley Boyz, The APA, The New Age Outlaws, and more to appear on the show. On Monday Night Raw last night, the WWE also announced that Chris Jericho will show up on the special episode, which is surprising news, to say the least.
Why Is Chris Jericho A Surprise For The WWE?
Chris Jericho allowed his WWE contract to expire in 2017 and is not under contract with the company at all right now. At the start of 2018, Jericho showed up and wrestled a match against IWGP U.S. Champion Kenny Omega at the New Japan Pro Wrestling show Wrestle Kingdom 12, his first appearance outside of the WWE in many years.
The very next night, Jericho returned to New Japan Pro Wrestling to attack Japanese superstar Tetsuya Naito at the New Years Dash show. While Omega is easily the biggest American star in New Japan (and he beat Chris Jericho cleanly in the match), Naito is the most popular star in New Japan, and this looks to set up Chris Jericho with a new feud, proving his New Japan appearance was not a one-off.
— WWE Network (@WWENetwork) January 16, 2018
While Chris Jericho and Triple H have both said that the WWE knew he was going to compete in New Japan, there seemed to be some bad blood under the surface. Jericho has a cruise coming up at the end of 2018 to celebrate rock and roll and wrestling. He wanted NXT to come along, but the WWE rejected the idea. Jericho is still going and signed on Ring of Honor instead.
Despite all this, Chris Jericho has always professed his love for the WWE. According to 411mania, Jericho is not under contract and will appear on Raw 25 without a contract. It was also reported that the announcement was made without a deal in place, so this is likely just Jericho doing the WWE a favor and possibly getting a chance to remind people he is still around to promote his New Japan appearances and his upcoming cruise.
Who Else Is Returning For WWE Raw 25?
On top of all the names the WWE already announced, What Culture reported that there were more legends they announced this week. Last year, Jacqueline entered the WWE Hall of Fame, and the former women’s champion will make an appearance this week. One wonders if she has enough left to make a special appearance in the women’s Royal Rumble match next week as well. Teri Runnels (Marlena) is also returning, and the same question could be asked about the upcoming debut Rumble match.
Maria Kanellis announced on social media that she was showing up. She is 30 weeks pregnant, so just expect her to make a possible backstage appearance. There is also a chance she could meet up with Maryse, and the WWE Universe can see two pregnant WWE superstars together.
Torrie Wilson is also coming back, and as the names indicate, there is a good chance the WWE is filling in the gaps on their 30-woman Rumble match since they don’t have 30 viable women under contract. Michelle McCool and Kelly Kelly are also coming.
For the men, the most recent announcements include Jerry Lawler and Jim Ross on commentary, as well as the return of The Million Dollar Man Ted DiBiase and Sgt. Slaughter.