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WWE News: Baszler to Raw, Garza Remaining in NXT, Rusev Contract Dispute

Wrestlemania season is upon us, and we may soon see a new face called up from NXT to compete at the big event. Shayna Baszler is expected to debut on Raw very shortly to begin a feud with Raw Women’s Champion Becky Lynch, according to Dave Meltzer’s Wrestling Observer Newsletter. The feud with Lynch is expected to lead to a title match between the two at Wrestlemania this year.

You may have noticed Lynch has been doing promos about how she has beaten everybody, but she has not beaten Baszler, who won a triple threat with Lynch and Bayley at Survivor Series in November. Baszler was not on NXT this week.

One wrestler who won’t be remaining on Raw for very long is Angel Garza, as he is expected to remain on the NXT roster for the foreseeable future. According to Meltzer, Garza was only brought in to be a fill-in for US Champion Andrade, who is presently serving a 30-day suspension for a Wellness Policy Violation. Once Andrade returns to Raw he is expected to continue the feud with Humberto Carrillo, while Garza remains on NXT. Garza may appear on Raw again over the next month, but after that he should be NXT only.

Someone who has been noticeably absent from Raw the last couple of weeks has been Rusev. According to Meltzer, Rusev has been removed from television due to a contract dispute. This dispute is the reason that Rusev’s months-long feud with Bobby Lashley was seemingly cut short, without Rusev getting any revenge on Lashley. At the Royal Rumble, Rusev and Lashley were removed from the match even though they were advertised for it. WWE claimed they got into a backstage brawl. WWE is hoping to be able to finish the Rusev and Lashley storyline, when and if the contract dispute is settled.

Rusev’s wife Lana (yes, they are still married) signed a five-year contract extension with WWE in November. It was expected that Rusev would re-sign with WWE as well, but apparently that hasn’t happened yet.

Matt’s Musings: Shayna Baszler is long overdue to debut on Raw, and will be a great addition to Raw every week. Keeping Garza in NXT is also a smart move, as he will get more opportunities to shine there without getting lost in the shuffle. As for Rusev, hopefully he and WWE can resolve whatever issues they are having, and Rusev can return and finally get the main event push he deserves.