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With the WWE Superstar Shakeup entering its second day, there was plenty of speculation over which Superstars would be moving where. Raw made headlines for moving across a lot of talent, so all eyes fell to Smackdown Live to see if they could match the level of excitement generated the night before.

The full list of Superstars moved from Monday Night Raw to Smackdown Live includes;

Kevin Owens (With the US Title)

Sami Zayn

Tamina

Charlotte

The Shining Stars

Rusev

Lana

Jinder Mahal

Sin Cara

The New Day

 

Owens needed this. His time at the top of Monday Night Raw drew mixed reactions from fans, who came to see the former Universal Champion as a watered down heel. His inital promo on Smackdown Live tonight spoke volumes about how he should be booked – and the fans loved every second of it.

Smackdown Live will thrive with Owens at the helm. he’s a man who can’t have a bad match and with so many huge names to feud against (Nakamura, Styles, Orton) the potential is huge. Great move and good decision by WWE.

 

Arguably the most important pick of the entire Smackdown arrivals. Sami Zayn has the potential to be a top-tier talent in WWE – but he was never getting there on Monday Night Raw. With Roman Reigns, Braun Strowman and lots of other big men ahead of him – the path to the top for Zayn was laughably out of reach.

Smackdown provides Sami with an excellent platform to transform into a main event player. Much like Eddie Guerrero and Chris Benoit did, the show can help make them a darling of the fans and push them up the card. His ability as a Superstar is unquestioned – WWE need to tap that potential now he’s on the right brand for it.

 

I think everyone expected this. Charlotte has done a great job carrying the baton over on Monday Night Raw, but she needed to step aside to let other Superstars have a shot in the limelight. It was either her or Sasha Banks moving, and Charlotte makes the most sense.

I’ll be interested to see how long it takes her to move into a feud for the title. Given how dominant she was on Monday Night Raw, it would be surprising if they keep the belt off her for an extended period of time Hopefully they keep her as a heel and work her up to that big money Championship match.

 

Did you remember Tamina was on Raw? I’d be amazed if anyone did to be honest, she’s been out injured for that long.

Tamina adds some veteran experience to the roster. I wouldn’t expect her to claim the Smackdown Live Women’s Championship, but there is every chance she can help shore up the likes of Carmella – who are still in need of work in getting over.

 

Arguably the most baffling swap of the lot. I understand they want to keep him and Kalisto apart (Luchadors sell merchandise well) but not putting Sin Cara on 205 Live seems like a missed opportunity.

I just don’t see him making an impact on Smackdown Live. There’s no real competition for him to go up against – something that would have been remedied had they put him on the Cruiserweight roster. A real missed opportunity and one that will hurt the long-time WWE Superstar, I feel.

 

Jinder Mahal is literally a non-entity. His move fills the spot that Curt Hawkins vacated when he jumped to Raw. It’s the equivalent of trading junk Superstars.

Not expecting this to do anything for anyone.

 

Interestingly, Lana was being billed as her own entity in this draft. Perhaps a way to add depth to the incredibly thin Women’s roster on Smackdown Live.

Breaking her away from Rusev will be interesting. We’ll need to see if fans take to her new gimmick, or if it crashlands against the Russian reality we’ve had forced on us for the past few years.

 

Rusev moving makes sense. Again, he was one of the Superstars that seemed destined to become trapped in Raw’s lower-midcard, despite the fact that fans really want to cheer for him.

I hope the creative team on Smackdown Live use him correctly. He’s got the potential to breakout as a big star and, given the right encouragement, could easily become that Superstar for WWE. They just need to use him correctly. A Superstar to watch.

 

Another trade that ultimately only serves to pad out the tag team division. I don’t blame WWE, they need tag teams that lose. But the Shining Stars are one of the more annoying teams on the roster, stuck with a gimmick so tragically poor that fans can’t help but hate them.

If the creative team on Smackdown are given a chance to work with them and turn the pair into something important – then there’s hope. Honestly though, I just see them as the new jobber team on Tuesday nights.

 

A lot of people seemed to call The New Day moving to Smackdown. It kind of makes sense, if only because there is literally nothing left for the team to do on Monday Night Raw. Having held the Raw Tag Team Championships for a record length of time, as well as hosting Wrestlemania 33, they’ve kind of hit a ceiling in the company.

Smackdown Live should give them another avenue to explore, while helping to put over some of the up and coming teams. That said if the big plan in all this is just to have The New Day grab the Smackdown Live Tag Team Championships and hold them ad-nausea, then we may have some problems.

 


Smackdown Live Superstar Shakeup Overview

I feel Smackdown Live got a good hand out of the Superstar Shakeup. The big news here is that a heap of hugely impressive wrestling talent is now on Tuesday night – teasing fans with feuds yet to come.

Kevin Owens can become a huge player on the brand, delivering quality across the board. Moving Sami Zayn made sense, as did moving Charlotte and The New Day.

The lower card picks are what they are – a series of interchangeables that don’t really make much different at the end of the day. With so much great midcard talent t work with now, I do wonder if Smackdown Live can make the best use of all its Superstars.

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