The Swiss fourth seed upset Djokovic in the quarter-finals on the way to winning his first Grand Slam title in Melbourne last year.
The Serb top seed is scheduled to face big-serving Canadian Milos Raonic in the quarters, while Wawrinka could meet Japanese fifth seed Kei Nishikori in
the last eight.
"It changes everything in your career, for sure," Wawrinka said of his life-changing Grand Slam triumph.
"When you win a Grand Slam you really start to be a part of the history of tennis," the Lausanne native said.
"It changed my life and my tennis," he said.
"I feel good and happy to be back — I'm playing well and have confidence in my game.
"It's the first Grand Slam of the year, everything starts from zero again, and you have to be ready for the two weeks."
Roger Federer, who is chasing an 18th Grand Slam victory at the age of 33, is on course to face Andy Murray in the quarterfinals in the bottom half of the draw.
Murray, a three-time Australian Open runner-up, lost to the Swiss great in the 2010 Melbourne Park final.
Federer, who will face Taipei's Lu Yen-Hsun in the opening round, is the second seed.
Third seed Rafael Nadal faces a tough first-up opponent in Russian Mikhail Youzhny and could play big-serving Czech Tomas Berdych in the quarters in the
bottom half of the draw.
One of the tougher first-round match-ups will see 2009 US Open champion Juan Martin del Potro, who is on the comeback trail from wrist surgery, take on Poland's Jerzy Janowicz.
Australian warhorse Lleyton Hewitt, playing in his 19th consecutive Australian Open, has drawn Chinese wildcard Zhang Ze in the opening round.