Fans who have been waiting to see the WWE Universal Champion on Monday Night Raw might have to wait quite a while, as Brock Lesnar’s next scheduled event is the January 21 episode of Raw, as reported by Wrestling Inc. That is the final episode before Lesnar faces number one contender Braun Strowman at the WWE’s Royal Rumble pay-per-view event.
The Chesapeake Arena, which is where the episode of Raw will take place, tweeted an image of Lesnar with the announcement that he would make his return to Monday Night Raw in Oklahoma City for the event.
There are a lot of episodes of Raw between now and the January 21 one, which leaves Strowman and Paul Heyman, who is Lesnar’s “advocate” and manager, to build up the big match on their own. That is, assuming Brock doesn’t appear on any episodes of Raw between now and then. While the venue is advertising it as Lesnar’s return, there’s still a chance he could end up appearing on some other episodes of the show in the build to Royal Rumble.
While we don’t know yet if Brock Lesnar will make any other appearances before the January 21 show in Oklahoma City, we do know that Heyman will appear on the Christmas Eve edition of Raw that’s airing this coming Monday to hype up the match.
The last time Lesnar appeared at a WWE event was at Survivor Series on November 18, where he defeated WWE Champion Daniel Bryan in a non-title match. His last Raw appearance was on November 12, which was the final episode of the show before the PPV event.
OKC - we’re getting an early Christmas present! @BrockLesnar returns to Monday Night RAW in Oklahoma City on January 21!— Chesapeake Arena (@ChesapeakeArena) December 21, 2018
You can still get your tickets at https://t.co/wvCEF94e8w pic.twitter.com/dXIcR0AQIS
Lesnar won the Universal Championship in a match against Braun Strowman after Roman Reigns was forced to relinquish the title due to his battle with leukemia. Since winning the title in October at the Crown Jewel event, Brock Lesnar hasn’t defended the title at all, and the defense against Strowman at the Royal Rumble will be his first.
At this time, it’s not known whether Brock Lesnar will stick around the WWE after the Royal Rumble in January. He’s entered into USADA testing pool to make a UFC return, and there have been talks of him facing current UFC Heavyweight Champion Daniel Cormier, but nothing has been made official yet.
With Vince McMahon promising to “shake things up” in the WWE, it’ll be interesting to see if the company decides to keep the title on Lesnar. Many fans have complained about having a Universal Champion who doesn’t appear on the show very often, and if the company actually plans to “give fans what they want,” putting the title on Strowman seems like the right move.