Night one of Vince McMahon's WWE Superstar Shake-Up is in the books. While we had expected to see clearly defined trades from one brand to the other, we instead had superstars seemingly show up at random to announce they were now members of the Raw roster.
In hindsight, it makes sense. Had we already known which Raw stars were going to show up on Smackdown tonight, we would have less incentive to tune in. Now we get another night with a surprise of superstars showing up to lay claim to their new turf.
Last night we saw superstars from the blue brand show up to invade every division on Raw. Former world champions and future world champions alike will now be calling Monday nights their home. We also saw a championship itself switching brands.
Make no mistake about it, the landscapes of both brands are shifting dramatically this week. In total, ten big roster moves were made on Raw. Click start slideshow below to see our grades for each and every one.
The Miz and Maryse
Really thought The Miz would have had a great WWE Championship run in him with Maryse by his side on Smackdown. I'm not so sure he'll get that same opportunity on Raw, where the roster is filled with behemoths like Brock Lesnar, Braun Strowman and Roman Reigns. But still, with three hours to kill, The Miz will certainly bring us an upgrade in quality entertainment.
Very surprised to see Ambrose here on the same show as Seth Rollins and Roman Reigns. As of right now, it doesn't appear as if any of the Shield members are headed to Smackdown, so it will be interesting to see all three on Raw for the first time in nearly a year. I don't anticipate both mid-card championships hanging around on Raw, so either he or Owens (or the winner of Owens/Jericho at Payback) will be moved to Tuesday nights.
Apollo was the first name announced for the Shake-Up, yet he was only seen in a brief video package where they mentioned his "athleticism" and "potential."
Yeah, they still have no clue what to do with this guy.
Let's face the facts: Hawkins came, he saw, and he got knocked out by The Big Show. I guess Raw was a little short on jobbers. This move gets a solid meh because I don't think anyone will ever remember that it happened.
So Bray is going from WWE Champion back to lost in the shuffle demonic mid-carder on Raw? Call me skeptical, but I feel like this is a downgrade for the Eater of Worlds. Sure, I'm excited to see what kind of spooky demon feud he can have with Finn Balor, but I'm fraid he'll get lost in the Raw shuffle.
YES! Kalisto will finally be in his rightful place with the 205 Live crew. It is certainly better than getting smashed with chairs by Baron Corbin and Dolph Ziggler.
Heath Slater and Rhyno
Oh, are they still a team? Yeah, I'm fine with them coming to Raw, but we don't need to keep them together. Surely there's a better path for each of these guys than to be stuck as tag team fodder. No? Ok, maybe not.
Largely considered one of the worst announcers in the world, Otunga will gain a lot from sitting with Corey Graves and Michael Cole. As for Byron Saxton, I wouldn't wish that job on anyone right now considering all the bullying allegations swirling around JBL. He strikes me as the kind of guy who will double down on his actions before he ever backs off.
Sure, why not. Mickie can provide a lot of insight and experience for the girls on Raw, not to mention she can still put on a pretty great match.
Alexa Bliss is perfect on the mic and her facial expressions are without parallel. Having her on Monday nights is a blessing. If she starts an alliance with Nia Jax, they are going to be a tremendously tough tandem to stop.0comments
Whether its working with Bayley or Sasha Banks, Alexa is a great fit for Raw.