Hey yo happy 12/12/12 day, which is significant to some people and just a regular Wednesday to us sane people. Normally Jacob is the one to write Wednesday Headlines, but he's unable to do it this week because the power has been knocked out at his apartment, so I'm happily filling in. 

There are stories circulating the internet (I think the term "dirtsheet" is outdated) that some former WWE superstars will be returning to the company in the near future (Lordsofpain). While no specific timeline is given for these returns, the names most frequently brought up are Montel Vontavious Porter and Shelton Benjamin. If you don't know, MVP has focused on his career in New Japan Pro Wrestling since he left WWE while Benjamin is also working in NJPW and for Ring of Honor as well. The two of them have actually formed a team in NJPW called Black Dynamite. 

A lot of people have been asking MVP about the WWE return rumor on Twitter apparently. That led him to fire off this Tweet

I have NOT been contacted by WWE. I still work for New Japan Pro Wrestling. I don't know anything about these rumours. Sorry.

 

What I know about the situation is that MVP has tweeted repeatedly about being on good terms with WWE. If you don't remember, MVP left the company in December of 2010 due to wanting to work in Japan and likely frustrations over the lack of direction for his character. I can't say I blame him for that because when they turned him face he lost a lot of the characteristics that made his cocky heel persona cool in the first place. 

I think if he wanted to return to WWE they would welcome him back. Of course he could also be lying about it because wrestlers like to work the fans, but I think he's being honest. If MVP or Benjamin were to return to WWE I think an event like the Royal Rumble would be the best time for it. We'll see what happens.

I'm a fan of MVP and Benjamin. They're talented performers. I think there are enough new performers on the main roster that if they came back and feuded with certain guys it would feel very fresh. I also thought MVP had main event potential. It didn't happen. Maybe if he returned he could get a bigger push. We'll never know unless they return to WWE. 

If I had to guess I would say MVP returning to WWE in 2013 is likely. I don't know when. I'm just going off his comments on Twitter where he seems open to the idea of coming back when he feels it's in his best interests. That does not mean it will be soon, which means his statement on Twitter is likely true. I'm just saying I think it's possible. 

As for Benjamin, I think if he's not bitter about being released two years ago then they would likely welcome him back too. He's a good worker who could help a lot of the younger wrestlers just by being in the ring with him. 

Who isn't rumored to be returning to WWE anytime soon? Mantaur. 

 

What's great about that clip is Vince McMahon is on commentary trying to put over the character as if it makes sense.

The guy's finishing move was a standing splash over his fallen opponent. He was so bad he couldn’t even run the ropes before he hit the finisher! The mid-90s WWF were dark days, my friends. Trust me. 

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On Monday's edition of Raw, there was a graphic showing the WWE divas that would take part in a "Santa's Helper" battle royal on the pre-show of Sunday's TLC pay-per-view. The match is taking place to determine the number one contender to Eve's Divas Title. The graphic prominently featured AJ Lee in the center. Now apparently she's out of the match. I guess since she is the storyline girlfriend of John Cena she has inherited his powers of not losing matches cleanly. (WWE.com / Lordsofpain

While no reason was given as to why AJ is out of the match, my guess is they want to save her Divas Title push for WrestleMania season, which is obviously in the near future. I think for storyline reasons they may say that Vickie Guerrero is keeping her out of the match because AJ lost to Vickie on Raw. Or they may not say anything. I don't think it matters. 

That means there are nine women in the battle royal on Sunday: Kaitlyn, Layla, Natalya, Rosa Mendes, Tamina Snuka, Aksana, Alicia Fox, Cameron and Naomi. Yeah that's right, my friends. The Funkadactyl girls that have not had a match on television are one match away from a title shot. It's just that easy. I've actually heard Naomi is pretty good in the ring and can be a star some day, so it will be interesting to see if she gets a chance to show that in this battle royal. 

When reached for comment (cough), WWE Chairman Vince McMahon offered this quote: "I'd hire more women, but my wife's last two elections cost me $100 million." 

He has a good point. 

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Next week is "WWE Week" on USA Network. Here's what the schedule looks like: 

MONDAY, DECEMBER 17 - WWE MONDAY NIGHT RAW (8-11:05pm) 

It's not just Raw. It's the Slammy Award edition of Raw, which means there will be plenty of awful jokes to go along with some outstanding video packages. 

TUESDAY, DECEMBER 18 - WWE Smackdown (LIVE) Commercial Free Special (8-10pm) and FAST & FURIOUS (2009) Hosted by Big Show (10pm-12am) 

A commercial free Smackdown on a Tuesday is interesting. Usually the Tuesday Smackdown specials do badly in terms of ratings, so I wonder if being commercial free will keep the viewers watching the show. I guess it's better than putting Smackdown on its usual Friday on the 21st because people could be away or having parties for the Christmas season. 

As for Fast & Furious, I don't think Big Show hosting it can help the lack of a plot in those movies. At least Fast Five was pretty good. 

WEDNESDAY, DECEMBER 19 - WWE TRIBUTE TO THE TROOPS (9-11pm) 

It was taped this past weekend in Virginia. It's the tenth time WWE has done a "tribute to the troops" show. 

On Thursday it's Big Show guest starring on the show Burn Notice

On Friday it's CM Punk hosting the movie The Game Plan, which starred The Rock. I guess that will be fun for people that want to see Punk deliver trash talk towards Rock. 

That's seven hours of content inside the WWE ring. Add in the three hour TLC PPV on Sunday and the one hour Main Event show on Wednesday. That's 11 hours of content WWE is putting out there. No wonder the creative team is so burned out that we see Great Khali and Hornswoggle being booked as an actual tag team. 

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Steve Austin has a new movie coming out. It's called "The Package." Here's the trailer. 

 

I have three comments about the trailer: 

1. Somebody paid Dolph Lundgren to act in this movie by choice? I love that his character name is "The German" too. I guess the writers of the movie were too lazy to google "names that German" and put something together.   

2. For all of you Stone Cold fans looking for a romantic comedy, this isn't it. Keep hoping.   

3. At the end, Austin's character headbutts a dude and then another guy in the room says that "he killed him with one hit." So he's dead after a headbutt to the chest? They need tougher bad guys in theses straight to DVD movies. 

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Regarding Randy Orton's arm injury that he suffered at the Tribute to the Troops taping that Andrew wrote about on Monday, they address the situation at the Smackdown tapings. He wasn't on Raw and when you see what happens on Smackdown you'll see why. 

On a related note, I wonder what percentage of internet fans don't read Smackdown spoilers. I'm guessing that 80% of the people that read a site like ours will read spoilers. It might be an even higher percentage of that. 

I actually set up a poll on the main page about the spoilers question. CLICK HERE TO VOTE!

I don't know how many people will actually vote. Why vote when you can complain about John Cena possibly beating Dolph Ziggler on Sunday or mocking Sin Cara's in-ring work even though he's improved a lot this year. Priorities are important!

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I'll end with this meme brought to my attention by my buddy Ed. With a tear in my eye, this may be the greatest wrestling meme of all time. Credit The Pro Wrestling Zone on Facebook for it.

Woo.

That's all from me. I may have a column up tomorrow, but I'm not sure if I have time. I'll definitely have the TLC PPV preview along with Andrew Johnson & Christian Michael most likely on Saturday morning (maybe Friday night) and then on Monday it will be a recap of TLC since I won't be seeing it live. Next Wednesday it's the fourth annual WWE Johnny Awards. Good times. The goal is to keep it under 10,000 words this year. Last year it was 12,000 words. It's important to set goals.

Smell ya later.

Twitter @johnreport