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WWE: Paul Heyman and Brock Lesnar's Return Means the Start of WrestleMania Season

By Tom Clark
January 1, 2014

(image from sescoops.com)

The New Year has finally arrived and with it came the return of Brock Lesnar and his advocate Paul Heyman to WWE programming. The duo appeared on the December 30 edition of Monday Night Raw in a spot that served notice to the rest of the company's locker room.

The Brains and The Beast are back. And it's about time.

I think it's safe to say that we all saw this coming at some point. After all Heyman has not been seen on WWE TV in quite some time, not since he took yet another beating at the hands of his former best friend CM Punk. The dissolution of their relationship was one of the biggest storylines of 2013 and rightfully so; it was some of the best drama that fans have seen in a very long time.

The torture that Heyman's character endured when Punk decided he no longer needed him was very intense. Paul lashed out at his former protege, verbally attacking him and using his clients to gain redemption at every turn. Brock, Curtis Axel and Ryback were all part of this, as they physically assaulted The Best in the World throughout the summer of 2013.

Punk of course had a different perspective on things. While he declared that he would always be a Paul Heyman guy, he wanted to go his own way. He did not want to be controlled, or monitored by Paul or by anyone else and this cemented his face turn with fans. Punk was his own man once again and the result of his liberation was some truly great television.

Punk and Heyman just absolutely killed it every time they were on the air. With each confrontation, the angle grew in popularity. Fans witnessed some of the most intelligent, most cerebral promos that we have ever seen.

The Brains and the Best made magic together. They raised their game to an all new level and it's the fans that reaped the benefits of it all. But that is apparently all over now.

While the bad blood between Heyman and Punk was obviously too thick to thin, the fact is that now it seems to be behind them. Paul is content with leaving the past in the past and focusing on the future. And that future is Brock Lesnar's pursuit of the WWE World Heavyweight Championship.

The announcement likely caused a great stir among not only those in attendance but for fans all over the world. The reason for that is because we all expected Brock to go after The Undertaker, for a major showdown at the company's biggest event of the year, WrestleMania 30.

This match does seem to be the most logical move for Lesnar, as he is really the only legend left to challenge The Phenom's undefeated streak on the WrestleMania stage. The two men have a history between them and from that history a new rivalry could evolve.

And I for one believe that Taker versus Lesnar would bring the house down at Mania.

But now, all bets are off. The fact that Heyman and Brock have set their sights on the industry's top championship has thrown a wrench in the machine and now it's anyone's guess as to what could happen. Will we see Brock step up and challenge the winner of Randy Orton versus John Cena? Will that Royal Rumble match lead us directly to the Elimination Chamber and the biggest title match we have seen in a while?

The truth is that it's still very early and there's no way to predict how this will all play out. While a Brock Lesnar title match is very intriguing, the fact is that there are a few Superstars who could get in the way. And one of those Superstars is ready to make a return himself.

Batista is coming back. The Animal's return date is set for January 20 and you can believe that if Brock Lesnar is in the building that night, then anticipation will be at an all time high. Will they cross paths? Will the Beast and the Animal meet in the ring for the first time on WWE programming?

For me, this is the best part about Lesnar's return. There are so many possibilities that exist, so many ways to showcase him not only on TV but on pay-per-view as well. The next few months leading up to WrestleMania should be very interesting indeed.

It's often said that the Royal Rumble is the official start of WrestleMania season. But the return of Paul Heyman and Brock Lesnar to WWE has jumpstarted the season earlier than ever before. Now, the drama is back.

The Brains and the Beast are back. And it's about time. 

Tom Clark is a WWE Featured Columnist & Consultant for Bleacher Report, a Contributor for Whatculture.com and a Contributor for the Camel Clutch Blog

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