This past week, the Superstar Shake Up witnessed numerous Superstars from RAW, SmackDown Live and NXT being traded to different brands. There were a few call ups, with NXT Superstars going to either RAW or SmackDown Live, and multiple stars now have the opportunity to alter their career path, and do better on a different brand.
Many fans believe that for the first time, SmackDown Live got the better of RAW during the draft. Major names were sent to the blue brand, while a few top stars traded their blue shirts for the red ones. Here are the ten major drafts during the Superstar Shake Up, with five the new recruits on RAW and five on SmackDown Live.
RAW – Superstar Shake Up
#5 Dolph Ziggler
The Show – Off wasn’t going anywhere on SmackDown Live, so him moving to RAW was the best option for the Superstar. While one can certainly point out the fact that Ziggler, who was stuck in the mid card on the blue brand, might get lost in the shuffle on RAW, it certainly helps the Superstar in changing things up.
Ziggler is a former World Heavyweight Champion, and while it feels like that happened a lifetime ago, he can still thrive with a new challenge, and could find himself competing for a mid card title on RAW.
#4 Jinder Mahal
Mahal demanded to be traded to RAW, and that was exactly what happened. The former WWE Champion and United States Champion visited RAW with the U.S title draped around him, but by the end of the evening, ‘The Maharaja’ lost his crown.
Mahal was put in a match with Jeff Hardy, and with Jeff moving to SmackDown Live, Jinder lost the United States title to the Charismatic Enigma. Jinder was used as a transitional champion, but might not hinder his evolution, as he can now set his sights on a different challenge, going after the Intercontinental title.
#3 Bobby Roode
The Glorious Superstar made a big splash on SmackDown Live, after being brought up from NXT. Roode is a former NXT Champion, and dropped the United States title to Randy Orton earlier this year. Bobby is one of the most exciting prospects in the company, and when he was drafted to RAW, it looked as if the Superstar was earmarked for big things in the company.
One would have to wonder why WWE moved Roode to RAW before he won the WWE Championship. Considering AJ, Nakamura and Daniel Bryan will now be involved in the WWE Championship scene, it would also make sense for Bobby to go after the Intercontinental Championship on the red brand, before moving onto bigger things.
#2 Drew McIntyre
‘The Chosen One’ was handpicked by Vince McMahon to win the WWE title years ago, and the Scottish Superstar can do big things on the main roster. Drew is more resourceful now, has more experience, and is all – round better than what he was years ago during his first run on the main roster.
On NXT, McIntyre proved that he is a big – game player, and hopefully will have a better outing this time around in the company. Drew is a phenomenal performer, and has the looks and the skills to become a future Universal Champion.
#1 Kevin Owens and Sami Zayn
Kevin Owens and Sami Zayn are, without a shadow of a doubt, the best heels in the company today. Whether they are hatching up sinister plots, beating up the authority figures, or are going after each other’s throats, the duo have brought more intrigue to the product over the past few months.
After being fired from SmackDown Live, and losing their opportunity to earn a RAW contract last week, Stephanie McMahon brought the duo to RAW, to ruffle Kurt Angle’s feathers.
SmackDown Live – Superstar Shake Up
#5 The Bar
Cesaro and Sheamus dropped the tag team titles to Strowman and Nicholas at WrestleMania, and while the duo are set to challenge once again for the RAW tag team titles, they were moved to SmackDown Live, which all but confirms their loss at the Greatest Royal Rumble event next week.
However, that bodes well for SmackDown Live, which will be getting a top tag team in return. For the past year, only three teams have challenged for the SmackDown tag team titles, and having a new team would inject some much needed energy into the division.
#4 Andrade “Cien” Almas
The former NXT Champion was expected to be drafted to the main roster, and found himself being called up to the land of opportunities during the Superstar Shake Up. Andrade Almas, along with Vega will now be seen on Tuesday nights, and the Superstar will only strengthen the spine of the blue brand’s roster.
It will be interesting to see where he finds himself initially on SmackDown Live. In the past, Superstars such as Baron Corbin started promisingly, but quickly faded away. Almas, however, might benefit from working the two – hour show, and feuding with some of the top talent in the company.
The Empress of Tomorrow faced Charlotte Flair at WrestleMania 34 for the SmackDown Women’s Championship, and tasted her first defeat in the company. Asuka is one of the top female Superstars in the organization, and her moving to SmackDown Live would further her rivalry with Charlotte Flair and Carmella, for the women’s title.
#2 Samoa Joe
While Joe was brought back on RAW after Mania, it is safe to say that the Samoan Submission Machine hasn’t been given his due credit, or chances to prove his worth. He would thrive on the blue brand, given the wealth of talent, and the fact that SmackDown Live has indeed given opportunities to deserving Superstars.
Joe is set to face Reigns at Backlash, but should find himself in the main event picture soon enough on SmackDown Live, facing a familiar foe in AJ Styles.
#1 The Miz
The A – Lister is one of the top talents in the company, and has been one of the best acts in the organization for a while. Moving Miz to SmackDown Live is a brilliant idea, given his past dealings with Daniel Bryan. With Bryan now cleared to compete once again, the rivalry between the former General Manager of SmackDown Live, and his arch nemesis would be a welcome change in the WWE.
Imagine The Miz cutting yet another promo similar to the one he unleashed on the then General Manager on Talking Smack! The feud has money written all over it.