The biggest star in WWE will ring in the new year with an appearance on both RAW and SmackDown Live.
John Cena will make his return to WWE television next Monday night, December 31st, and Tuesday night, January 1st. Cena's return to SmackDown was first announced, with WWE quickly following that up by making it known that he would appear on both RAW and SmackDown.
Next week's editions of both RAW and SmackDown will actually be airing on tape delay. RAW will be taped this Friday night in Detroit while SmackDown will be taped this Saturday night, December 29th, in Pittsburgh, PA. It will be the second week in a row that both RAW and SmackDown air on tape delay due to the holidays.
While WWE hasn't announced Cena's role on either show, he has been advertised for a MizTV segment on SmackDown locally, so it's a good bet that's how he will be slotted into the broadcast. The only other part of next week's SmackDown that has been announced is a New Year's Celebration with The New Day.
Vince McMahon announced this week on RAW that Cena would be returning and performing on both the RAW and SmackDown brands.
Cena is advertised for a slew of shows throughout January, though interestingly he was not originally slated for television. Cena had even stated in some recent interviews that his brief return in January would be exclusively at non-televised events. Perhaps WWE's historically low television ratings in December have prompted the company to change course when it comes to their use of Cena during the brief period of availability he has in early 2019.
Cena is not expected to perform at the Royal Rumble on January 27th due to a scheduling conflict. He is currently scheduled to begin shooting a new film in Vancouver prior to the Rumble.
Cena has also been doing promotional work of late for his latest film, Bumblebee, which recently hit theatres.