WWE Superstar Shake-Up: Our Picks To Improve Both Brands

A look at which Superstars would most benefit from changing brands next week during the WWE Superstar Shake-Up

Superstar Shake-Up
WWE Superstar Shake-Up

Next week’s RAW and SmackDown broadcasts will feature the annual Superstar Shake-Up. It’s a chance for WWE to reshuffle the rosters and create all new match-ups for the coming year. Ahead of the Superatar Shake-Up, we’ve put together a list of ‘trades’ that we think would benefit both the Superstars and the brands they’d be moving to.

To keep the logistics as simple as possible, we’ve avoided listing any champions being traded, although it’s entirely possible we could see such a move next week. We also limited our list to the top acts from each division – and there will likely be many more trades than we’ve listed here.

To SmackDown from RAW:

  • Roman Reigns
  • Jeff Hardy
  • Asuka
  • Sasha Banks
  • The Revival
  • The Bar
  • Elias

To RAW from SmackDown:

  • Daniel Bryan
  • Shinsuke Nakamura
  • Charlotte Flair
  • Becky Lynch
  • Kevin Owens & Sami Zayn
  • The Usos
  • Baron Corbin

These trades create a slew of new opportunities for the top stars on both shows. We’ll break down the reasoning behind the more significant developments below. Should these trades occur, here is a look at how each brand would look after the Superstar Shake-Up:

SmackDown:

  • AJ Styles (c)
  • Jinder Mahal (c)
  • Carmella (c)
  • Bludgeon Brothers (c)
  • Roman Reigns
  • Randy Orton
  • Jeff Hardy
  • Bobby Roode
  • Elias
  • Asuka
  • Sasha Banks
  • The Revival
  • The Bar
  • The New Day

 

RAW:

  • Brock Lesnar (c)
  • Seth Rollins (c)
  • Nia Jax (c)
  • Ronda Rousey
  • Daniel Bryan
  • Braun Strowman
  • Finn Balor
  • Shinsuke Nakamura
  • Samoa Joe
  • Baron Corbin
  • Charlotte Flair
  • Becky Lynch
  • Sasha Banks
  • Owens & Zayn
  • The Usos

Key Takeaways:

Roman Reigns:

Roman Reigns is the wrestler who is in most need of new surroundings. Reigns could very well capture the Universal Championship from Brock Lesnar at the Greatest Royal Rumble, but we’re going under the assumption that Lesnar retains. WrestleMania 34 was the strongest indication yet that WWE has come to terms with the fact that Reigns hasn’t gotten over as they hoped. Reigns defeating Lesnar just weeks later would allow him to win the belt in front of a more forgiving live audience, but it doesn’t address the underlying damaged foundation. On SmackDown, the pressure of being ‘the chosen one’ to slay Brock Lesnar is alleviated and Reigns will have a chance to find himself, tweak his character and get over more organically.

Daniel Bryan:

Daniel Bryan is WWE’s top babyface (sorry, Roman). If he can stay healthy, Bryan could move the needle for Monday Night RAW’s viewership in a time when WWE is in the midst of TV rights fees negotiations. Wherever Bryan wrestles, there will be a long list of prospective dream matches. We got a taste of Bryan vs. Styles this week on SmackDown Live, but on RAW – he’s got feuds waiting for him with the likes of Seth Rollins, Finn Balor, Samoa Joe and even monsters like Braun Strowman and Brock Lesnar.

Jeff Hardy:

With Bray Wyatt now aligned with Broken Matt, it makes sense to move Jeff Hardy to SmackDown where he can pursue a singles career separate from the Broken Universe. Jeff looked good in his (surprise) return match on RAW and his popularity would allow him to be a featured act on SmackDown.

Charlotte:

After dropping the SmackDown Women’s Championship to Carmella this week, Charlotte moving to RAW seems like an obvious one. Over the past week, there has been a lot of speculation that next year’s WrestleMania will feature a showdown between Charlotte and Ronda Rousey. Done right, this could be the first women’s match in history to headline a WrestleMania. We will see if WWE can resist pulling the trigger on this match before then.

Braun Strowman:

Braun is my MVP in the entire company. With Brock Lesnar rumored to be gearing up for a UFC return, this leaves an opening for Braun to assume that role of unbeatable dominant heel champion. I would have Braun Strowman be the man to dethrone Brock Lesnar in the coming weeks. Put the title on him and let Daniel Bryan chase him until WrestleMania.

As mentioned above, Brock Lesnar retaining the Universal Championship at WrestleMania was a major break in WWE’s longterm planning. Lesnar could be on his way out and they decided against pulling the trigger on Reigns at Mania. It doesn’t make a ton of sense to pull that trigger just weeks later on a smaller stage. Strowman has more than proven himself as a polished performer in and out of the ring. The Reigns experiment flopped – it’s time for something new.

What do you think about our ideas for the Superstar Shake-Up? Comment and let us know who you want to see change brands.