Until recently, most WWE fans probably suspected that Braun Strowman would play a big role at the upcoming TLC pay-per-view. However, with Strowman taking time off from wrestling to get surgery on his elbow, we might see the return of someone who’s been off WWE TV for a while for vaguer reasons, Bray Wyatt.
Strowman’s former leader in the Wyatt Family had, to many viewers, become less and less compelling since the heyday of his swamp cult faction four to five years ago. His feud and face turn to team with Woken Matt Hardy briefly gave the character some new life, but when Hardy seemingly retired from wrestling, Wyatt’s absence from WWE programming began.
He returned at the recent Starrcade event, though not in the WWE Network special cut. Baron Corbin issued an open challenge because his scheduled opponent, Strowman, wasn’t able to compete. In a moment that could signal a babyface turn and/or storyline drawing from Wyatt Family lore, Bray Wyatt answered the challenge and defeated Corbin.
With this and his recent segment on the new Edge and Christian Show, it looks like a Wyatt return to TV is inevitable. According to the Wrestling Observer Newsletter, this could be at TLC, in an angle similar to the one at Starrcade in which he would replace Strowman in a current feud.
Wyatt has been supporting this theory/storyline on social media. A few days after Starrcade, he cryptically tweeted the image of illusionist Harry Houdini in chains.
He also tweeted support of Matt Hardy’s proposition that he should become Raw’s new Woken GM, explained why he answered Corbin’s open challenge (connecting it with his history with Strowman) and expressed interest in a “shamanic Post Apocalyptic skirt.”
It’ll be interesting to see how whatever version of this storyline that makes it to Raw, etc, plays out, and if a singles face run and a high-profile PPV match can rehabilitate the Bray Wyatt character.