Roman Reigns isn’t a bad guy, he’s not a good guy, he’s the face of Monday Night Raw? Apparently that’s going to be the case, according to Dave Meltzer of the Wrestling Observer Newsletter.
Earlier this week, WWE made the announcement that, starting in July, their secondary show, SmackDown, will be moving to Tuesday nights on the USA Network, and that the show will be live, instead of taped. The SmackDown show has always been taped on Tuesday night, but it’s rarely ever been live, as it’s almost always been shown on either Friday or Thursday night.
According to reports, the USA Network is struggling, and they’re looking to do something to boost their viewership, and, apparently, they believe that moving SmackDown to Tuesday nights will do just that. USA also wants WWE to make SmackDown an A-level show like Raw is, which is why WWE is doing the brand-extension.
The question now is, who will be on what show? Well, we don’t know that answer to that question as of this moment. All we know is that John Cena will be the face of SmackDown, and that, yes, Roman Reigns will be the face of Monday Night Raw.
It’s expected that WWE will have a draft, similar to the one they did in 2002, where Vince McMahon and Ric Flair selected their first 10 stars for their respective shows. At the time, WWE’s plan was for the WWE World Heavyweight Champion to be on both brands, so they wouldn’t have to add another World Title. But that was changed later that year, when they awarded Raw’s Triple H the World Heavyweight Championship.
As of right now, the plan is to have two World Champions. At this moment, it doesn’t look like Roman Reigns, or whoever will be the WWE World Heavyweight Champion this July, will have to be on both shows. But, things could change, and WWE could decide to stick to one World Champ due to the fact that they just got rid of their second World Title not too long ago.
Much like back in 2002, it looks like WWE will still try to present Raw as their main show. But, with John Cena being the face of SmackDown, there’s a good chance that the Tuesday night show may end up doing a lot better in the ratings.
In the past, WWE has, for whatever reason, had an issue with SmackDown beating Raw in overall viewership, and there’s really no reason why their thinking will be any different this time around, as they still have the same people running things.
If SmackDown does end up beating Raw in the ratings, then they could end up making Roman Reigns and John Cena trade places. But, of course, they’re hoping that Reigns turns out to be everything they hope he’ll be by this coming July. Whether or not that happens remains to be seen. But, so far, Reigns’ segments haven’t been as highly rated as John Cena’s.
There aren’t a whole lot of people who believe that WWE will be able to successfully pull off this brand-extension, mainly because Vince McMahon is such a knee-jerk reaction kind of guy. So, if Raw isn’t doing as well as he wants it to do, he’ll gut SmackDown of most of its top stars in order to improve Raw’s viewership. That’s how things went the first time around; but, maybe things will be different this time around. We’ll just have to wait and see.
[Image via WWE]