2018 Superstar Shakeup Predictions w/ The Chairman
This coming Monday and Tuesday night, WWE is having another Superstar Shakeup. For those unfamiliar with the shakeup, this is when superstars switch shows from Raw to Smackdown via trades. It’s very exciting to see which superstars are going to switch shows. Even champions and tag teams aren’t safe as they can be moved as well. The only disappointment is we don’t know who is getting traded for who. Superstars just start randomly showing up on Raw and Smackdown respectively hence why I liked the old draft format personally. Either or, I’m here to make some predictions on who is getting moved.
RAW acquires Zack Ryder
Not every superstar that switches shows is going to be a main event superstar. Even the guys in the low to mid card need a shakeup as well. Ryder in my opinion would benefit from a change of scenery. His run with Mojo Rawley as the Hype Bros was a failure and even Mojo’s heel turn didn’t help either one with their short feud. The best thing WWE could do with Ryder is send him to Raw and pair him up with his old tag team partner Curt Hawkins. Ryder could try to help Hawkins end his losing streak and best case scenario is give Raw depth in the tag team division.
Smackdown Live acquires Heath Slater
Let’s face it, Slater hasn’t had any success switching over to Raw last year with Rhyno. The first ever Smackdown Live Tag Team Champions haven’t even came close to the success they had on Smackdown. Smart thing to do here is before they go the obvious somebody turns on their partner route is just to split them up. I’d be interested in seeing what Slater could do in singles on Smackdown Live since he’s been doing nothing but teaming with Rhyno since the brand split. I definitely think he has more of a shot going somewhere on Smackdown opposed to Raw.
Raw acquires Kevin Owens and Sami Zayn
The situation with Kevin Owens and Sami Zayn is definitely a strange one since they got exiled from Smackdown Live after losing to Daniel Bryan and Shane McMahon at Wrestlemania. Clearly two of the biggest names on the WWE roster aren’t going unsigned. Sure Kurt Angle gave them both a chance last Monday to wrestle for a contract, but neither one walked away with it since their match ended in a draw. It may not happen this Monday, but eventually Owens and Zayn will find themselves back on Raw. Unless Paige does something completely screwy behind Shane’s back and brings Owens and Zayn back to Smackdown Live. I however am going to say Owens and Zayn head to Raw and the first thing Kevin Owens should do is ask about his Universal Championship rematch since he never got one. Then again, neither did Finn Balor or Goldberg? Of course they’ll probably just play the supposed thirty day compete clause anyway. Also would this be considered a trade of a free agent signing? I’m guessing Raw wouldn’t have to technically send anyone back to Smackdown to acquire both Owens and Zayn…
Smackdown Live acquires Finn Balor
While this one is kind of a longshot, I think this would benefit Balor. It’s clear Raw is the land of the big men like Brock Lesnar, Roman Reigns, and Braun Strowman. Finn Balor isn’t going to sniff the Universal Championship anytime soon. Balor has tried his hand against Seth Rollins and The Miz for the Intercontinental Championship and has come up short. Balor even got stuck in a never ending feud with Bray Wyatt that made us cringe. It’s time for the Demon to pack up and head to Smackdown where programs with AJ Styles, Shinsuke Nakamura, and Daniel Bryan await. Balor could easily become WWE Champion on Smackdown Live at some point in time. This move would only help him in my opinion.
Smackdown Live acquires Seth Rollins (Intercontinental Championship)
Hope fans didn’t buy into those Monday Night Rollins t-shirts, because I wouldn’t be shocked if we see the midcard championships switch brands again this year. Last year Dean Ambrose and the Intercontinental Championship were traded from Smackdown Live to Raw for Kevin Owens and the United States Championship. I’m a huge Rollins fan and would love to see him finally step into the ring with the likes of Styles, Nakamura, Bryan, etc. I also would love to see Rollins retain against The Miz at Backlash separating The Miz from the Intercontinental Championship. The title that Miz has worked hard at bringing prestige to is on the other show and he has absolutely no chance at getting back. With how close he is to the record this would drive Miz insane. Think of the storylines that could be worked on that alone. Okay, getting off topic so let’s get back on track.
Raw acquires Jinder Mahal (United States Championship)
If Rollins and the Intercontinental Championship go to Smackdown Live, you know the United States Championship is coming to Raw. Jinder Mahal as WWE Champion last year has been in programs with many of the top guys on Smackdown Live such as Randy Orton, Shinsuke Nakamura, and AJ Styles. Fans are already cringing that we’re seeing Mahal and Orton feud again. Mahal needs to get away from everything Smackdown Live and find some fresh feuds on Raw. I for one would love to see Braun Strowman destroy Mahal and win the United States Championship. The United States Championship needs to become important again and hasn’t been in my opinion since John Cena’s run with the open challenges a few years ago.
Smackdown Live acquires Luke Gallows and Karl Anderson
With Balor going to Smackdown in my predictions, it only makes sense to take his Club with him. The Good Brothers haven’t been get the respect they deserve in the tag team division and getting knocked out in the first round of the recent tag team elimination tournament has all but tells me they need a change of scenery. Smackdown Live has a thriving tag team division and I really think Gallows and Anderson could be the tag team to step up to the Bludgeon Brothers if they get booked properly. Maybe I just want to see Karl Anderson face off against Harper one on one?
Raw acquires Baron Corbin
Corbin is another superstar that could use a change. After failing in his Money in the Bank cash in and his ongoing shortcomings, he needs to escape Smackdown Live. Corbin could go to Raw and reinvent himself. Will he become a main event player, probably not. Will he fill the role of a midcard heel, absolutely.
Smackdown Live acquires Andrade “Cien” Almas and Zelina Vega
Smackdown Live didn’t get many of the NXT superstars that Raw did so I feel Smackdown deserves to bring on the former NXT Champion Almas. Almas could walk in and make an immediate impact with Zelina Vega by his side. As most folks know, when you drop the NXT Championship, the main roster isn’t too far behind. Look for Almas to get the call this week.
Raw acquires Sin Cara
Raw might as well add some depth to the revitalized Cruiserweight division and Sin Cara isn’t doing anything on Smackdown Live. Go ahead and bring Sin Cara on board to 205 Live.
Smackdown Live acquires Sasha Banks
Raw’s women division has been thriving and in recent months got even stronger with the additions of Asuka and Ember Moon. Along with Alexa Bliss and the recent rise of babyface Nia Jax, Sasha as of late has been cast aside from the title picture. Sasha has been instead involved in a strange feud with Bayley. Even though many fans wanted their encounter at Wrestlemania, Sasha is finally stepping into the ring with Bayley on Monday and this should be Sasha’s send off. Smackdown is in dire need of a boost to their women’s division and Sasha can instantly help. As awesome as some of the matches between Charlotte and Sasha have been in the past, hopefully they save their next encounter for a marquee pay per view.
Raw acquires The Usos
The Uso Penitentiary has taken the Smackdown Live Tag Team Division to a whole new level. Ever since they ditched the bright colors and face paint and became their Day One selves, the Usos have been on fire. They’ve had many epic clashes with the New Day, but it’s time for these guys to go their separate ways. Raw’s tag team division is at an all time low when an eight year old was the last recorded champion. It’s time for the Usos to put respect back into the tag team division on Raw.
Smackdown Live acquires Jeff Hardy
With Woken Matt Hardy overseeing Bray Wyatt, it looks like Brother Nero is on the outside looking in far as the broken universe goes. I think it would be best if Jeff Hardy went to Smackdown Live and did his own thing. If Hardy can stay out of trouble, he could definitely become a sleeper on Smackdown Live as a main event player.
Raw acquires Becky Lynch
Becky Lynch is one of the most talented wrestlers in WWE, but for some reason she’s always in the shadow of the other horsewomen. With Sasha coming over in my projections, I figure it would only be right to bring another one of the horsewomen over. With Charlotte coming over last year and all the unfinished business with Carmella, Peyton Royce, and Billie Kay. I had to send Becky over. She was on a dark match last week for crying out loud. Becky Lynch would be a huge asset for Raw.
Smackdown Live acquires Elias
Elias has been on fire in recent weeks and I think he would benefit more on Smackdown Live if they’re ever going to let him run with a championship. His program with Braun is wrapped up and Elias can still get under John Cena’s skin since he’s a free agent. Therefore there’s no reason Elias has to stay on Raw.
Raw acquires Natalya
The veteran Natalya had a good run on Smackdown Live and she even claimed the Smackdown Live Women’s Championship. However there seems to be an overcrowding of heel women on Smackdown and Natalya is basically a solo superstar. Therefore it would make sense to uproot the Queen of Harts to Raw.
Smackdown Live acquires Mandy Rose
With Paige as the general manager of Smackdown Live, Absolution is more than likely finished. I could possibly see Paige bringing both of her girls to Smackdown. Then again, I could also see Sonya Deville getting into a feud with Ronda Rousey. Therefore I’m just going to say that Paige pulls the strings to acquire Mandy Rose and continue to mentor her.
Smackdown Live acquires Sanity
I don’t think Smackdown Live is done acquiring talent from NXT so I think they dip in again and bring in Sanity. Sanity could be used in a number of ways so it’d be interesting to see what happens. They could feud for titles, they could go after another stable like New Day. Plus since they’re not taking them from Raw, they don’t have to give up a superstar.
What do you guys think? Agree? Disagree? Who do you think gets swapped? Let me know on Twitter @chairmanpodcast and thanks for reading!!!