I hear you saying, but where is David Bedwell? He is coming back soon, I promise, but this week, and maybe next one, you will have to deal with SteelChair’s own Nygma. For as long as I could remember, I haven’t done a SmackDown review for a while and I was right because it’s been more than a year. Because of the Draft, here I am, back in the Blue town.
Unless you’re living on another planet, it’s Draft time in WWE. We tried ourselves at predicting who could go where but all of us knows everything is possible in WWE. Including the Draft rules that surprised some of us.
- Officials from NXT, RAW, SmackDown, FOX and the USA Network have been meeting over the picks.
- Half of the roster will be drafted on tonight’s SmackDown, the other half will be drafted on Monday’s RAW.
- Any un-drafted Superstars after Monday will automatically become free agents, free to sign with any brand of their choosing.
- All Draft changes will officially go into effect on the October 22 edition of SmackDown, the night after Crown Jewel.
So, what was decided yesterday night and will be decided on Monday is going to be valid only in 3 weeks. As you will read after, that doesn’t mean the draftees are not going to visit their new brand in between. Here we go for a special review, of the show itself, the Draft, and some interesting bits and pieces you couldn’t miss. Let’s dig into it.
WHAT HAPPENED IN THE RING AND BACKSTAGE
- Roman Reigns and Paul Heyman were in the ring for a chat, but first, we look at a package on Reigns vs. Finn Balor from Extreme Rules. Reigns’ shirt now said “We The Ones” and he demanded to be acknowledged, which the fans were interested in doing. Heyman said that’s not good enough and talked about how the Demon is no longer undefeated. Reigns performed an exorcism, and now he is moving on to Crown Jewel, which will not be taking place in Suplex City. That’s because Brock Lesnar will be running into the Suplexorcist and be smashed…. but here came Lesnar in person. After a long staredown, they brawled, with Lesnar clearing Reigns out. The Usos came in and got dropped with F5’s, sending Reigns and Heyman away.
- Backstage, RAW Women’s Champion Charlotte Flair didn’t reply to Kayla Braxton’s question on how Flair’s strategy will change going to a new brand. Flair wanted Braxton to congratulate her and she did. Flair went on about how of course FOX drafted the most decorated woman in sports-entertainment history. Flair said long live the queen and shouted a “Wooo!” as she walked off.
- Happy Corbin defeated Kevin Owens, thanks to a distraction from “Madcap” Riddick Moss.
- Backstage, the new SmackDown Superstar Drew McIntyre told Kayla he is proud of his RAW accomplishments, and how he’s thinking about the past and the future. Drew recalled being The Chosen One on SmackDown before and said it didn’t work out, and he’s always felt like he had unfinished business here. Drew then mentioned the future and pointed his sword, announcing that he wants the Universal Title.
- Edge, in the ring, reminded us he is the only person here who was on the first SmackDown. Now though, he had been sent to RAW, which he sees as a challenge. Speaking of a challenge, we had Seth Rollins, who attacked him in Madison Square Garden three weeks ago and took him out again. Edge is on his way to 100% and wanted Rollins to come out here and make him saw Rollins is better. In fact, Rollins was rather happy to be here at Edge’s house (his real home). Edge stormed to the back as Rollins let himself inside and asked for Beth (Phoenix, Edge’s wife). Rollins helped himself to an apple and an orange juice while admiring Edge’s kids’ backpacks. As Rollins had a seat in the library, we cut to Edge frantically calling Beth and telling her to go to her brother’s (and ignore the groceries).
- Carmella vs Liv Morgan never began. They talked trash… A lot…
- The New Day and The Street Profits vs. Dolph Ziggler, Robert Roode, Otis & Chad Gable.
- Backstage, Kayla was with the new SmackDown Superstar Jeff Hardy. Before he could speak, Brock Lesnar walked up. (Read below) After that, Roman Reigns asked if he and Heyman are good friends, with Heyman saying of course they are. Not sure Reigns was convinced…
- Sasha Banks defeated Bianca Belair. SmackDown Women’s Champion Becky Lynch joined the announcers’ table. She distracted Belair and gave the win to Banks. After the match, RAW Women’s Champion Charlotte Flair immediately appeared out of nowhere and flattened Banks and Belair. Flair stood tall in the ring, raised the RAW Women’s Title belt in the air and stared out as Lynch raised the SmackDown Women’s Title belt in the air at ringside.
WHAT HAPPENED ON THE STAGE
Adam Pearce and Sonya Deville announced the 16 draftees during 4 different rounds (so there will be 16 draftees on RAW on Monday…).
- SmackDown selected WWE Universal Champion Roman Reigns.
- RAW picked WWE Champion Big E to stay on the Red brand.
- SmackDown picked RAW Women’s Champion Charlotte Flair.
- RAW picked Bianca Belair to come over from SmackDown.
- SmackDown selected Drew McIntyre to come from RAW.
- RAW selected RAW Tag Team Champions Randy Orton and Riddle to stay on the brand.
- SmackDown picked The New Day’s Kofi Kingston and Xavier Woods to come from RAW.
- SmackDown selected WWE Hall of Famer Edge to come over from RAW.
- SmackDown selected Happy Baron Corbin and Riddick “Madcap” Moss to stay on the brand.
- RAW selected WWE Women’s Tag Team Champions Nikki A.S.H. and Rhea Ripley to stay on the brand.
- SmackDown selected Hit Row (“B-Fab” Briana Brandy, Ashante “Thee” Adonis, “Top Dolla” AJ Francis, NXT North American Champion Isaiah “Swerve” Scott) to come from WWE NXT.
- RAW selected Keith “Bearcat” Lee to stay on the brand.
- SmackDown picked Naomi to stay on the show. Sonya Deville was not very happy…
- RAW selected Rey Mysterio and Dominik Mysterio to come over.
- SmackDown picked Jeff Hardy to come over.
- RAW selected Austin Theory from NXT.
To sum up, Bianca Belair, Edge, Rey & Dominik Mysterio are moving from SmackDown to RAW while Austin Theory is moving from NXT to RAW. RAW Women’s Champion Charlotte Flair, Drew McIntyre, The New Day, and Jeff Hardy are moving from RAW to SmackDown, while Hit Row (Top Dolla, Swerve Scott, B-Fab, Ashante Thee Adonis) is moving from NXT to SmackDown.
The major surprise was to see the RAW Women’s Champion Charlotte drafted to SmackDown. Unless Becky Lynch is drafted to RAW or lose SmackDown Women’s title, there will be a problem. WWE chose not to reunite The New Day, even if it has been rumoured many times over the last few months. The Hit Row faction is still pretty fresh to go to the main roster. Drew McIntyre to SmackDown and Bianca Belair to RAW are not really a surprise, many arenas were teasing an upcoming McIntyre vs Reigns for the Universal title. Because WWE are for peace in the households, this first half of the draft lets think The Street Profits and Mia Yim will come to RAW and The Usos will stay on SmackDown.
WHAT ELSE HAPPENED
WWE Hall of Famer Bill Goldberg has been officially announced for Monday’s RAW. Goldberg will be on RAW to confront Bobby Lashley, furthering their feud for the planned match at WWE Crown Jewel in Saudi Arabia. Goldberg recently appeared via satellite to issue a warning to Lashley, but this will be his first live appearance since SummerSlam. This is the moment when I’m happy to say I had Botox injections, so I can hide the fact I am really not smiling…
Brock Lesnar talked. I mean, he did a promo. Alone. He scared Kayla Braxton, he scared Jeff Hardy. It was so strange I was unable to move during all the promo. He could have gone out of my cellphone and attack me… I am joking but if you had to chance to watch some of Brock’s promos in UFC, you would know he is very good at that game. We saw that a few minutes after, as Lesnar announced that he is now a free agent, thanks to his “good friend” Heyman, and because he is a free agent, he can do whatever he wants. That infuriated The Tribal Chief Roman Reigns who ordered Heyman to go to Monday’s WWE Draft Night 2 edition of RAW from Nashville and see to it that The Usos are also drafted to SmackDown. Reigns then told The Usos to go to RAW with Heyman and to make it clear that they are to be drafted to SmackDown, and if they are not then leave Heyman for dead at RAW.
WWE has officially announced the inaugural Queen’s Crown Tournament and the 2021 King of the Ring tournament. the tournament matches will begin during next Friday’s SmackDown season premiere episode, which will air live from the SAP Center in San Jose, CA. The tournaments will then continue on the October 11 edition of RAW from the Chase Center in San Francisco, with the finals taking place at WWE Crown Jewel in Saudi Arabia.
There’s not a lot to say right now about the draft as we have to wait till Monday night to know who was chosen and who will have to choose his brand. About the show, nothing fantastic, a classic fallout from Extreme Rules mixed with a slow build-up for Crown Jewel. There is no word on what WWE has planned for Lesnar now that he is a free agent, but it will be interesting to see what happens after Crown Jewel when Draft changes officially go into effect.
All pics and videos courtesy of WWE