Barely a month ago, WWE fans were in a state of shock. Within the space of 24 hours, their anointed hero Cody Rhodes failed in his bid to “finish the story” against Roman Reigns at WrestleMania 39. Then, it was announced that the company engaged in a stunning merger with the UFC, and if that wasn’t enough, the Head of Creative Triple H announced on the Raw after the Showcase of the Immortals that, yet another brand split was on the cards.
The defeat of the Rhodes was a particularly difficult pill for fans to swallow. Heading into his maiden Undisputed WWE Universal Championship tilt against The Tribal Chief, all roads seemed to point to a victory for the American Nightmare. Online bookmakers such as Bovada, which provide combat sports, soccer, basketball, and football betting had made the 2023 Royal Rumble match winner a -300 favorite to secure the gold on the Grandest Stage of Them All. But in the end, the powers that be within the company decided that their Roman Reigns-related obsession was just too much to deny, and now Roman’s reign of terror looks set to extend past 1,000 days.
But with the news of the impending WWE Draft at least presented the opportunity for a fresh start, with new challengers arriving and new storylines on the horizon, or so you’d think. Unfortunately, it hasn’t quite panned out that way thus far.
Barely a month in, the 2023 WWE Draft is shaping up to be an abject failure. And here’s why.
Just days after Triple H announced the impending WWE Draft, he went on to make another massive announcement. Due to the fact that both he and his company had booked themselves into a corner, placing both of their world championships onto the admittedly impressive shoulders of Reigns, Trips announced that there would be a THIRD world title inaugurated. The new strap would simply be known as the World Heavyweight Championship.
While most younger fans were excited at the prospect of seeing someone other than the Head of the Table holding major heavyweight gold, the more hardcore fans could see this championship for exactly what it was… a consolation prize. But seeing as Reigns was drafted to SmackDown, at least the new title would be contested solely on Raw so that the Monday night brand would have its own title, right?
Afraid not. The qualifying tournament for the new title was contested on both Raw and SmackDown, which makes absolutely zero sense considering the fact that whoever wins the currently vacant title will automatically be transferred to Raw anyway, making the brand split a waste of time in the first place. But at least some new stars will emerge to contest for the crown, won’t they?
Again, unfortunately not. Seth Rollins and AJ Styles will face off for the gold at Night of Champions on May 27th, with the Visionary the seemingly obvious winner as he is assigned to the Red Brand. But superstars at the top of their game such as Dominik Mysterio were nowhere to be seen in the tournament, and the status quo has never been stronger.
Brace yourself guys because this is about to get confusing. So, Raw Women’s Champion Bianca Belair was drafted to SmackDown and Smackdown Women’s Champion Rhea Ripley was drafted to Raw. That’s stupid, but at least the pair lcan simply swap titles, and all will be right in the world.
We’re tired of typing this now, but once again, unfortunately not. The EST of WWE is still holding the red strap even though she’s now on the blue brand. ‘Mami’ has followed suit and she is defending the blue title on the red brand. Can somebody make some sense of this?
And what of the unified titles? The whole point of a new heavyweight title on Monday nights was because Roman holds all the heavyweight gold and he has been transferred to SmackDown. But Kevin Owens and Sami Zayn hold the Unified WWE Tag Team Championships, meaning that they hold both the Smackdown and Raw Tag Team crowns, so what will happen to them?
Well, the duo was transferred to Raw, so if we follow the Roman Reigns theory, SmackDown is going to need a new set of Tag Team titles, right? Well. No. Both KO and Zayn have regularly featured on SmackDown since the draft, which took place just a matter of weeks ago. Remind us again what the point in all of this was.
Finally, we come to everyone’s favorite Beast Incarnate, Brock Lesnar. Triple H announced that the former UFC Heavyweight Champion had negotiated free agent status, meaning that he can appear on both Raw and SmackDown. That’s fine, he’s Brock Lesnar and he can do whatever he damn well pleases.
The same cannot be said for the likes of Baron Corbin, Dolph Ziggler, Elias, Omos, Cedric Alexander, and Shelton Benjamin, however. They are hardly marquee attractions, so why are they appearing on both brands? Nothing at all makes sense, somebody please make it make sense!