The WWE Superstar Shake-Up is this week, and it’s always an exciting time for the fans watching at home. You never know who will move brands, as the entire roster will be in attendance for both Raw and Smackdown.
But there is a bigger question at hand: Who should move brands?
Here are the Top 5 roster moves WWE should make in the Superstar Shake-Up. These moves include Raw/Smackdown swaps, and an NXT call-up. Read and then hit me up on Twitter @ChairshotGreg with your top moves!
5. Seth Rollins to Smackdown, Jinder Mahal to Raw
Headed into WrestleMania, I long assumed Rollins would be headed to Smackdown to take the mantle of the Blue Brand along with AJ Styles, with Shinske Nakamura heading to Raw. Today I can’t be so sure about the second half, but I still see Seth Rollins moving to Smackdown to lead the march towards WrestleMania 35.
As for Jinder Mahal? WWE is in the midst of a television courtship with Fox, and the diverse appeal represented by Mahal is probably a bigger deal than the internet fan wants to believe. Mahal is also an amazing heel, which is the key to long-term storytelling.
Another hidden reason for Mahal to go to Raw? The Authors Of Pain. Akam and Razar will be without Paul Ellering, presumably because the former doesn’t want the heavy travel schedule. While the Singh Brothers provide a great diversion, AOP won’t be thrown around quite so easily, and with The Maharaja there to do the talking, they can be a serious threat in the neglected tag team division.
4. Andrade “Cien” Almas (with Zelina Vega) to Smackdown
Andrade “Cien” Almas has been brilliant during his NXT run, despite being a bit directionless at the start. Once Zelina Vega showed up, the key piece was no longer missing. Now it’s time to take this act to Smackdown, and keep it intact.
Vega is involved in the Paige movie production, Fighting With My Family, and having her on the brand can be useful. But this is about way more than that.
Almas, a major star as La Sombra in Mexico, has proven he can carry a story to the fans, and they’ve proven they will buy-in. He’s provided some of NXT’s best in-ring performances over the past year, and Vega has been the added element needed to drive his story home.
On Smackdown you have some great potential feuds with Bobby Roode, and NXT-fan dream opponents like Shinsuke Nakamura, AJ Styles (if he doesn’t move) and more.
Billed at 210 lbs, I wouldn’t be against him “dropping five pounds” and sticking around for 205 Live after Smackdown on occasion. The purple brand’s association with Raw has been downplayed to the point that this crossover wouldn’t be a bad thing.
3. The Usos to Raw, The Bar to Smackdown
The Usos earned their way onto the WrestleMania main card, even if it didn’t go so well. Now they’ve earned their way onto Raw, where they can reunite with their blood(line) in Roman Reigns.
Provided, that is, that Reigns doesn’t move to Smackdown!
The Bar was absolutely ravaged at WrestleMania, to the point that I don’t think you can take them seriously. I’d fully expect them to lose to Matt Hardy & Bray Wyatt in Saudi Arabia, and departing for the blue brand.
I’d also expect them to break up. Sheamus vs. AJ Styles and/or Nakamura could be amazing, but the split would most benefit Cesaro. It’s no secret that I love Cesaro, and with Sheamus potentially nearing the end of his career, the time is perfect to push Cesaro.
(Pushing Cesaro, by the way, is a move I won’t ever give up on. Ever.)
2. Sasha Banks to Smackdown, Becky Lynch to Raw
Two of the three women involved in the most important women’s match in WrestleMania history (at WrestleMania 32 with Charlotte Flair) Sasha Banks and Becky Lynch are two of the pioneers of the current Women’s Evolution. And no women are in bigger need of a change of scenery than these two.
Moving her to Smackdown does mean more potential match-ups with Charlotte Flair, a match-up we say far too often on Raw before the last shake-up. But it also provides some great match-ups for Becky Lynch, who has really floundered for the last year on Smackdown.
The move also separates Sasha and Bayley, which is likely to get a blowoff (for now) this Monday on Raw.
- Kofi Kingston and Xavier Woods to Raw – Believe it or not, this is really Xavier going to 205 Live (as suggested by Chairshot Radio’s PC Tunney), Kofi on Raw, and leaving Big E to have a singles career on Smackdown.
- Drew McIntyre to Raw – Drew McIntyre was rushed to the NXT Championship, and almost seems out of place. He didn’t appear on the most recent tapings that I know of, and outside of Andrade has no real reason to be there. I think he could do really well on Raw.
1. Roman Reigns to Smackdown, Daniel Bryan to Raw
Even typing those words, I think I’m crazy. But this one really makes TOTAL sense.
Roman Reigns has spend forever being touted as “The Guy,” but his booking in the end doesn’t prove it. His loss to Brock Lesnar at WrestleMania came three years too late, and now he seems to be lacking any real direction. Samoa Joe stepped up to the challenge, but he doesn’t even get a shot as The Samoan Sex Machine until after Roman challenges Brock inside a steel cage at Greatest Royal Rumble.
In my ideal example, Reigns loses again at Greatest Royal Rumble, coming to Raw to feud with Shinsuke Nakamura and AJ Styles–two men he’s put on amazing matches with in the past (even if Nakamura was in a short dose at the Royal Rumble). Short of disappearing until SummerSlam, a move to Smackdown is appropriate for Reigns.
Daniel Bryan may seem like the heart and soul of Smackdown, but in reality he’s the heart and soul of the entire WWE. Sending him to Raw, especially during the aforementioned television negotiations, makes tremendous sense.
Plus moving Daniel Bryan to Raw puts him in position to complete the story of his return: winning the Universal Championship from Brock Lesnar. It’s the closest you can get to the Yes Movement, and it’s a brilliant call to the fact that Daniel Bryan was supposed to get overwhelmed by Brock Lesnar at SummerSlam 2014, not John Cena.
Who do you think should move? Hit me up on Twitter @ChairshotGreg with your top moves!
King’s Greatest Hits Of Jeff Hardy
As he battles his demons, Chris King looks at some more positive moments in Jeff Hardy’s career!
I’m sure by now you’ve heard the disturbing news that former WWE superstar and recent AEW signee Jeff Hardy, was arrested again for multiple charges including a DUI. Hardy has had a hard and tragic road of recovery throughout the years in multiple wrestling promotions.
Not too long ago, Hardy walked out on WWE after they were rumored to have offered the former world champion to go to treatment for his substance abuse issues. Hardy refused and said that he was better but, as we saw the demons are still lurking and got the best of him again.
I have seen some nasty comments and even some distasteful memes about the AEW superstar and felt compelled to go against the grain. Instead of kicking a man when he’s down, I’m going to put together a greatest hits for the “Charismatic Enigma.”
Jeff Hardy & The TLC Match
Everyone can say that Shawn Michaels and Razor Ramon helped innovate the iconic ladder match and you are right, but Jeff Hardy and his death-defying stunts changed the concept of the match forever. The Hardy Boyz vs. The Dudley Boyz vs. Edge & Christian and their iconic TLC match should have their wing in the Hall of Fame. The risks all six superstars took for the adoration of the crowd could have ended all of their illustrious careers. In the words of Vince McMahon, It’s such good shit!
Jeff Hardy Earns The Undertaker’s Respect
On the July 1st, 2002 episode of Monday Night Raw, Hardy delivered the performance of a lifetime nearly winning the WWE Undisputed Championship from The Undertaker in an incredible ladder match. The young up-and-comer was faced with his greatest task yet, challenging for the most prestigious title in sports entertainment. Hardy showed that without a shadow of a doubt he deserved to be in the main event scene, but came within minutes of defeating Taker. At the time of the match, Hardy was still finding his footing as a singles competitor and earned the respect of the champion and legend.
Swanton Bomb From The Heavens
When I think of the daredevil Jeff Hardy, I can’t help but think of this one crazy-as-hell stunt. At WWE One Night Stand 2008, Hardy faced off against the juggernaut Umaga in a falls count anywhere match. This match was so insane as both superstars fought into the parking lot. Hardy is one of the craziest and bravest superstars, hit a Swanton Bomb off a damn stage truck onto Umaga. It’s one of the wildest things you’ll ever see.
Hardy Wins The WWE Championship
In 2008, Hardy finally made his way to the main event title picture alongside partner Triple H. HHH was Hardy’s mentor in some sort of way which led to the daredevil achieving his lifelong dream of becoming WWE champion. At the 2008 Armageddon pay-per-view, Hardy would face HHH and longtime rival Edge in a triple-threat match for the title. In what was a great match between all three superstars, Hardy delivered a Swanton Bomb to Edge to win the illustrious championship.
Straight Edge Problems For Hardy
The following year, Hardy found himself in the way of young-up-and-comer CM Punk who is looking to make an example out of him. Punk had won the Money in the Bank briefcase for the second year in a row and took advantage of Hardy to win the world title. What started as mutual respect between both superstars changed drastically, when Punk started throwing jabs at Hardy for his drug and substance abuse real-life issues. Punk would form his infamous stable known as the Straight Edge Society. This is a very underrated feud and you should go back and watch it in its entirety. The promos are gold.
The Hardy Boyz Return To WWE
Both Matt and Jeff Hardy found success in multiple other wrestling promotions including Ring of Honor, and TNA during their time away from WWE. Both brothers were struggling with their vices and made poor life choices but straightened up their act over the years. In 2017, the Hardy Boyz would face longtime rivals The Young Bucks in ROH. The following night the adored tag team would make their incredible return to WWE at WrestleMania 33. Matt and Jeff would be named the final team in the Fatal 4-way ladder match for the Raw Tag Team Championships. The pop these two received was insane and very much deserved. They would go on to win the match and win the titles to capitalize on their momentum.
Jeffery Nero Hardy Makes AEW Debut
From 2017-to 2022 Jeff Hardy would find himself pigeonholed in the mid-card title picture. He would have feuds with a plethora of superstars including Samoa Joe, and Randy Orton. Orton and Hardy had a nasty Hell in a Cell match back in 2018. Earlier this year, Hardy was seen running around after the 24/7 Championship, which was disappointing to see. After being genuinely unhappy in WWE, Hardy would make his AEW debut on the March 9th episode of AEW Dynamite. Hardy would come to the aid of his brother and longtime partner.
This week news broke that Hardy had been arrested for multiple charges including a DUI. While it’s easy to beat a man while he’s down, how about we uplift and try to encourage him to get the help he needs.
As a longtime wrestling fan, I have the utmost respect for Hardy and wish him the best of luck in his battle with addiction.
DeMarco’s Things I Learned From WWE Smackdown On FOX (June 17, 2022)
Greg DeMarco presents what he learned watching WWE Smackdown On FOX for June 17, 2022, featuring Matt Riddle, Vince McMahon, Pat McAfee, and more!
Greg DeMarco presents what he learned watching WWE Smackdown On FOX for June 17, 2022, featuring Matt Riddle, Vince McMahon, Pat McAfee, and more!
WWE presented Smackdown on Friday night, June 17, 2022, from “Moneyapolis” featuring the “big fight feel” main event between Roman Reigns and Matt Riddle, with The Tribal Chief’s Undisputed WWE Universal Championship on the line. We also continued down the road to Money In The Bank in Vegas.
RK-Bro Is Effectively Done
The video package and all of Matt Riddle’s tributes to Randy Orton are just a little bit too much. Riddle does “too much” very well–in fact, it’s his character. But the amount of tribute being played to Randy Orton seems to be a set-up for Orton’s eventual return (whenever that might be) OPPOSITE Riddle. Maybe it’s in the Royal Rumble, maybe after.
Regardless of how it happens (and much of that has to do with his surgery and rehabilitation process), I think we are closer than ever to a heel Randy Orton opposing the babyface Matt Riddle.
Madcap Moss Is Undeniably Over
“Madcap just might be a guy.” – Pat McAfee
Pat McAfee knows what he’s talking about on this one–Madcap is indeed a guy. Riddick Moss always had the tools, just had injury issues. Since making his return to competition as Baron “Happy” Corbin’s sidekick, all Moss has done is prove his worth to WWE. He’s got a good look. He can cut a good promo. He’s vastly a underrated in-ring storyteller. And above all else, he has “it.”
WWE is always looking to add to the main event rotation, but it seems harder to crack that right now. But Madcap Moss has what it takes to do just that.
Montez Ford Is Gonna Be A (Solo) Star
The Street Profits are a fantastic act, and are insanely over. But Montez is a guy–a guy who the company can build around. While I feel bad for Angelo Dawkins, I (along with so many others) see Ford being a solo star.
We’re Getting Baron Corbin vs. Pat McAfee At SummerSlam
It’s the perfect set-up:
- Baron Corbin is highly regarded within the organization as one of the safest workers around, a point that has been made by Randy Orton himself.
- Pat McAfee is a big-moment superstar, and SummerSlam is the moment for him.
And for the record, I love it. While I an a big time purveyor of “Baron Corbin Sucks,” I know what he can do in the ring. And him vs. Pat McAfee would have Nashville rocking–and that is what McAfee in the ring is all about.
Vince McMahon Is Literally A Man Of Steel
If you have listened to any of Bruce Prichard’s podcasts, you know Vince McMahon believes you “don’t sell.” Not in the ring, but whenever the world has turned against you in any way–including lawsuits and investigations–you don’t sell it. You hold your head high, and live above it all.
That’s exactly what the boss did when opening up WWE Smackdown On FOX. It’s entirely possible that the plan changed along the way, and we were going to get “Mr. McMahon” at some point–but what happened is trademark Vince. Not the character, but the man. And if we expected anything else, we haven’t been paying attention.
Matt Riddle Is Now A Made Man
Matt Riddle and Roman Reigns delivered a pay per view (or premium live event…pick your poison) quality main event on WWE Smackdown on FOX, on a night where the world was likely watching. Tonight was his moment, and even in a loss, he delivered.
With a singular world champion–and one who likely isn’t losing anytime soon–it’s hard to say when Riddle could become a world champ. But the stipulation added to tonight’s match (which wasn’t discussed enough on air) means that Matt Riddle now cannot challenge Roman Reigns again (that’s how the graphic showed it). That screams a Money In The Bank or Royal Rumble win to me.
It’s also highly possible that a Seth Rollins wins the Money In The Bank briefcase, and his cash in splits the titles back up, opening the door for Riddle come next spring.
Either way–one fact remains true: Matt Riddle is now a made man, and doing it on his own.
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