2016 is an up and down year for the WWE but there were a lot of surprise returns. Here are the WWE top ten surprise returns in 2016 starring Bill Goldberg and Shane McMahon.
10. Nikki Bella
The longest reigning Divas champion of all-time returned at WWE SummerSlam. She replaced the suspended Eva Marie in the six-woman tag team match. It was a surprise return because Nikki Bella underwent neck surgery earlier in January which makes it more impressive.
9. Stone Cold Steve Austin
The Texas Rattlesnake has been making sporadic appearances since 2005. However, all his returns are always suppressing and memorable. He returned this year at WrestleMania 32 along with Shawn Michaels and Mick Foley as they beat up the League of Nations.
8. Luke Harper
Luke Harper suffered a knee injury in March and he was given a six-month recovery period. September arrived but he still not returned which makes his appearance at WWE No Mercy surprising. He distracted Randy Orton to help Bray Wyatt pick up the win.
7. Daniel Bryan
The return of Daniel Bryan could have been higher if he retired in 2015 and not this year. Nevertheless, the SmackDown Live general manager proved on the July 18th episode of Raw that he is still the most popular superstar in the WWE.
The Swiss Superman was on a roll in 2015 and he was in line for a big push. However, he suffered a shoulder injury in October which sidelined him for six months. He returned just in time on the Raw after WrestleMania 32 to a huge pop from the Dallas crowd.
5. Chris Jericho
The return of Chris Jericho on the January 4 edition of Raw is high on this list because of its significance. This year is arguably one of the best in Jericho’s career as he introduced the list and the Gift of Jericho. He is set to leave after WrestleMania 33 which makes his every appearance must-see TV.
4. Triple H
The Game returned from a Roman Reigns beating at the Royal Rumble and won the WWE title. However, Triple H’s return on the August 29 episode of Raw was more surprising since he helped Kevin Owens beat Seth Rollins to win the WWE Universal championship.
3. Seth Rollins
2015 was the year of Seth Rollins but it ended on a sour note with a knee injury in November. He was set to miss nine months but he returned earlier than scheduled. He came back at WWE Extreme Rules to attack Roman Reigns.
2. Bill Goldberg
After 12 years, Bill Goldberg returned to the WWE to lay down a challenge to Brock Lesnar. His return is deemed successful because he helped increase the ratings for Raw. It is also memorable because he squashed Lesnar in their match at WWE Survivor Series.
1. Shane McMahon
Arguably the most shocking WWE return of the year, nobody expected Shane McMahon to return on the February 22 episode of Raw. He interrupted his father and sister during the presentation the Vincent J. McMahon Legacy Award.
The pop he received from the Detroit crowd was amazing and it is evident that Shane-O-Mac was emotional. The return also set the internet on fire which makes this number one WWE return of the year.
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