Superstar Shake-Up 2 Electric Boogaloo

Smackdown continues the Superstar Shakeup. Last night was maybe less then what we expected. Other then Kevin Owens and we can’t say a main eventer came over from Smackdown… unless you want to include Jinder. ¯\_(ツ)_/¯ I was excited about Drew McIntyre coming back up (all three of 3MB on RAW) as well as KO/Zayn. Hopefully tonight gives us a bit more to be excited about. Especially as the women’s and tag divisions could use some new blood.

Jeff Hardy – B+

The move for Jeff is probably better then you’d think. Getting him away from Matt and Bray allow them to do their thing before all are reunited in a year. Jeff can do the brother Nero character down the road. Also, Jeff as a single is better on Smackdown due to all the faces currently on RAW.

The Miz – A+

This makes the most sense of any move in the shake-up. We finally get a Daniel Bryan/Miz feud and the Miz WILL move up the card on Smackdown. I’d also enjoy programs with Styles, Rusev and Shane McMahon. It would be entertaining to watch Miz annoy the Smackdown authority figure.

Absolution – B

Smart  to move these gals over. Especially for Sonya who needs to be on a seperate brand from Ronda Rousey. Also, at some point, Paige can turn heel and play favorites for her girls in Absolution. The women’s division needs more help though as they lost Riot Squad and Nattie. Hopefully more women move over to the blue brand.

Samoa Joe – B-

Why build up a feud with Roman? I’m a big of Joe and think he should be pushed into the title picture. But aren’t Joe and Rusev in the same spot? Big bruiser heel that can demolish opponents. Wish Rusev looking like a heel Tuesday the characters effectiveness might not be less then it should be. Hopefully Joe goes to the moon and we see programs with Orton, Styles and Bryan. And, hopefully a title reign along the way.

Sanity – A with Nikki Cross; B without Nikki Cross

Kind of hard to give this any other grade. Smackdown gets another tag team, singles wrestler in Dain and one of my favorites in Nikki Cross. She can be a linchpin to the women’s division for years to come with her character work and technical ability. Although, I’m not seeing her in the promotional picture so if she’s not in the faction then the grade goes down a full grade. I also like keeping them on a seperate brand from Matt Hardy and Bray Wyatt so both brands can have some crazy.

Big Cass – C

Cass has a lot of potential. But he needs work in all facets of his game. Going on to smack down, he’ll be forced to try and stand out even more since its a two hour program. At least on RAW, you can be stashed away on a larger roster. If Cass has improved on the mic and with his in ring storytelling then hopefully he can start to reach some of that potential.

Asuka – B+

The women’s roster needed some star power and they got it. Between the addition of the Iconics, Absolution and Asuka the women’s division looks solid. Her chasing Carmella for the title, then a rematch at Summer Slam would be interesting. The only down side for me is that Becky Lynch might be taking a back seat to Charlotte, Asuka and probably Naomi. 😦

Good Brothers/Club/Anderson and Gallows – C+

Love these guys out of the ring now more then in. But, that’s mostly due to the booking. Perhaps a reunion with Uncle Alan will bring some life to them and help their spot in the tag division. I don’t see them climbing above the Bludgeon Brothers, New Day, Uso’s or even Sanity but you never know.

The Bar – C-

So the issue with this is it pretty much says who’s winning the tag titles in Saudi Arabia. Both guys can go between tags and singles which is good because they might need to take a slight backseat in a crowded tag division.

R-Truth- D

I honestly didn’t know which program was on before all this. Glad the knowledge was dropped on me.

Andrade Almas – A-

Smackdown gains a high upside heel who can do wonders with his athleticism, story telling and pairing with Zelina Vega. He would be a great choice to take the US title off Jeff Hardy, or anyone else in the near future.

Other Notes

  • The day he office embraces Rusev is the day I will believe they like money.
  • Is Gables character that he can’t keep a tag partner?
  • Who would have thought out of Enzo, Cass and Carmella that Carmella would be the breakout star at this point.
  • Whoever took Carmella’s new WWE render with the Women’s title should lose their certification as a photographer. She’s gorgeous and that photo makes her look like she had some hackjob facial surgery.
  • Carmella_pro_title--ef0e9f6b80fff8724f7ada57d05699bf.png
  • So the Billie doesn’t get to have a win on her debut match?
  • Oh man. We get that awesome Daniel Bryan/Big Cass feud.
  • I didn’t have a grade on Mike Kanellis because he really hasn’t been a part of the roster.

 

Superstar Shake-Up

Welcome to my Pro Wrestling Blog. This will evolve and change over time but hopefully mold into something meaningful. Most importantly, you enjoy reading as much as I enjoy writing this blog.

April 16th’s edition of RAW features the Superstar Shake-Up. This will be a great way to freshen up the rosters and create fresh rivalries. Some match ups should be saved for down the road (Daniel Bryan/Miz) while others could be used to bring exciting match-ups for what is considered the slow season between Mania and Summer Slam.

Coming into the show, each roster has specific needs that should be addressed. I’m channeling my inner Todd McShay (Because Mel Kiper sucks) and grade the moves that are made during the show. Considering this is being billed as a two night event, part two will be tomorrow.

Jinder Mahal – C

OK, not the best start in my opinion. The positive is this could mix up the titles. I’m not going to assume Rollins and the Intercontinental title goes to Smackdown but that has to look likely. The negatives are I’m not a fan of Mahal. The character is so something out of the territory days of wrestling and that’s not a good thing. There is a need for heels on RAW but I don’t think his in ring skills are up to snuff. Hopefully, the Singh Brothers get their chance to shine.

Riot Squad – B-

I like the Riot squad a lot. All three women have showed promise at various times and Ruby Riot is a great hand and will get a run with a women’s title at some point in time. But, I don’t really see this being a good spot for them to flourish if they are on the same show as some sort of combination of Nia Jax, Ronda Rousey, Sasha Banks, Bayley, Charlotte, Naomi, Ember Moon and Asuka. They could be used as someone to feed to those women. It may be the role they are stuck with for now. I also suspect Alexa Bliss goes back to Smackdown so she can be the other top heel with Carmella and possibly Nikki Cross.

Sami Zayn/Kevin Owens – A

Both guys needed a change of scenery. Both were featured prominently on Smackdown every week. But, the story had runs its course. These two can be used as a tag team for feuds so the versatility makes them even more valuable. And moving their chemistry to RAW to torture Kurt Angle could be very fun. Also, considering The Miz was traded to Smackdown they will be needed now more then ever.

Breezango – B-

This could be fun to see the backstage segments as they taunt the BAR, AoP, the Revival and others. But I don’t see the moving up on the pecking order so they will probably be used to help put over the other teams as well as Hardy/Wyatt and really any other team. These guys are talented and hopefully they get opportunities to rise to the occasion. But I don’t see them getting many chances to move into the title picture. A big but slightly underhanded win over the bar gives keeps them above water for now

Nattie Niedhart – C

Love Nattie but she looks to be past her time to be a believable threat. I’m not saying she can’t wrestle anymore or put on great matches. She can! But, do you see her having another run over any of the women mentioned with the Riot Squad? The positive is she is a respected leader of the locker room and has a good relationship with Ronda. If you haven’t seen the video of Ronda backstage at Wrestlemania after her match go check it out. Nattie was one of the first women (along with the Bella twins… Hi Nikki) to congratulate her. If this is done to help Ronda get used to the grind of the WWE life, then that’s all good.

Zack Ryder – F

Ryder was announced as part of the superstar shakeup over Twitter… TWITTER! Ryder hasn’t had anything going since the Hype Bros broke up. He can fill out the lower card.

Dolph Ziggler – C

When the record scratch sound came over the PA, I got sad. Dolph was a guy that the crowd got behind so organically and the company just decided not to get behind him. Now… he’s… uhhhhh. There. And that’s really it. On Smackdown he just gave up the US title then came back. That in of itself is a microcosm of his career in the WWE. Just an after thought. I am curious to see what happens with Drew McIntyre.

Drew McIntyre – B+

He didn’t need to be in NXT anymore. And aligning with Ziggler is good for him in the long run. If they tag together, Ziggler will take the pins and when they turn against each other, Drew will probably go over. He can work with a lot of faces and look like a Killer. My only concern is that he’s working with the talented but overlooked Ziggler.

Baron Corbin – B

2017 looked like it was going to be a big year for Corbin. He won Money in the Bank and was positioned at the top of the Smackdown card. Obviously, it didn’t turn out well for him. A switch to RAW is a great move as it provides Baro fresh matches with smaller faces that he can physically dominate. If reports are to be believed and Vince is still high on him, perhaps this is how the lone wolf reinvigorates his career.

Mojo Rawley F

Remember the phrase “X-Pac Heat”. I propose we replace it with “Mojo Heat”. I have yet to find a redeeming quality of a Mojo match. I switch over to HGTV when he’s on.

Ascension – D

At least they get to continue to be a part of the fashion files. They, like Mojo and Ryder were announced over Social Media.

Bobby Roode – B

Bobby did fine on Smackdown but was miscast as a babyface. Hopefully on RAW he is turned to a heel and is allowed to reach his full potential.

Other Notes –

  • Shock to all but the crowd gets behind Bayley when she fires back. She slaps between her and Sasha gave the crowd something to get behind.
  • “What” chants can die and go to hell.
  • I’m waiting for someone to sell the Eclipse the way the Rock sold the stunner. Mickie got very close to that level.
  • Roman wearing that chain makes me feel like he wears Affliction shirts.
  • Shout to the sign that said “Call the IRS, Reigns hasn’t paid his taxes”. Bravo sir. Creative and not quite as offensive as “Roman is a Holocaust denier”.
  • Joe is killing these promos. He is believable and looks the part of a killer. “Put the big dog to sleep” is a great line.
  • With Axel and Dallas losing Miz, I’m curious how they survive on the roster.