The dust has cleared after the first round of WWE’s “Superstar Shake-Up,” and 11 wrestlers have moved from SmackDown Live to Monday Night RAW, with Bray Wyatt, The Miz, and reigning Intercontinental Champion Dean Ambrose leading the way. And with another round of roster moves due for tonight’s episode of SmackDown, Kevin Owens, The New Day, and Charlotte Flair may be just some of the RAW Superstars moving from the red brand to the blue brand.
According to the Inquisitr‘s recap of WWE’s Superstar Shake-Up on last night’s Monday Night RAW, big roster moves were confirmed as early as the opening segment as The Miz and Maryse cut a promo, where they dressed up and spoke like John Cena and Nikki Bella. They were soon joined by Dean Ambrose, who feigned pleasure at seeing two familiar faces join him on RAW, but went on to attack Miz to make his presence felt, with the Intercontinental Championship moving to RAW. That may suggest, however, that WWE’s Superstar Shake-Up on SmackDown Live may feature Kevin Owens bringing his U.S. Championship to the blue brand tonight.
Logically speaking, it would make sense for WWE to pull off a trade of mid-card titles, with RAW getting the IC belt and SmackDown getting the U.S. belt. But Forbes wrestling writer Blake Oestriecher opined yesterday that Owens moving to SmackDown Live would allow him to take advantage of how the brand has done better than RAW when it comes to booking heel wrestlers.
“Owens is in dire need of a fresh start on SmackDown, which, as evidenced by The Miz and AJ Styles, does a much better job of booking its heels, and specifically, its heel champions.”
Last Friday, PWInsider (h/t AllWrestlingNews) wrote that the WWE Superstar Shake-Up might not include one SmackDown-to-RAW trade many had been expecting — AJ Styles moving to the red brand and possibly reuniting with fellow Bullet Club (New Japan Pro Wrestling) colleagues Luke Gallows, Karl Anderson, and Finn Balor. But it now seems that Styles won’t be making the move to RAW after all, as it’s now likely that Gallows and Anderson will be traded to SmackDown, still allowing the faction WWE refers to as “The Club” to reunite somehow.
Heavy, citing Dave Meltzer of the Wrestling Observer Newsletter in its report, wrote on Sunday that The New Day still appears likely to head to SmackDown Live via the Superstar Shake-Up, as WWE tries to bolster the blue brand’s arguably weak tag team division.
“The New Day going to SmackDown Live is also a logical choice, as the SmackDown tag team division is in need of a makeover and The New Day is one of the most popular modern tag teams in the WWE.”
Further movement in WWE’s women’s divisions may also be taking place later on tonight. If the above-mentioned PWInsider report is accurate, the WWE Superstar Shake-Up’s SmackDown round may see Sasha Banks and Charlotte Flair switching brands tonight, just like Alexa Bliss and Mickie James joined RAW on last night’s episode. The Alexa-for-Charlotte trade had been rumored for some time, so seeing Flair on the blue brand should not come as a surprise. Meanwhile, Banks’ possible move to SmackDown Live suggests her planned heel turn on Bayley may have been abandoned for the meantime.
Last night, Bray Wyatt announced his move to the RAW brand by suggesting he’s still got unfinished business with WWE Champion Randy Orton to be settled at the Payback pay-per-view later this month, while also calling out Finn Balor and teasing a new feud between both men. This may or may not suggest a trade of main event belts, with Orton going to RAW and Brock Lesnar bringing the Universal Championship to SmackDown.
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The New Day
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Summing it all up, we’ve got Kevin Owens, Luke Gallows, Karl Anderson, Charlotte Flair, Sasha Banks, and The New Day all rumored to be part of the WWE Superstar Shake-Up’s SmackDown Live edition. Sound off in the comments if you’ve got any ideas on which RAW wrestlers you think may go, or should go to SmackDown on tonight’s episode.
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