Well the WWE Draft has come and gone, with some very, very interesting moves. Some of which I was right about (Punk, Triple H, Jericho, Mysterio), but some I was rather shocked about (Big Show, Matt Hardy). However, in the end, I think that this was more or less a very good draft, which should give a number of talents a great opportunity to move up. I'll look at the few people who I think were most affected by the moves.
WINNER: CM Punk. An easy choice here, as there was clearly not much room at the top for Punk on Raw, especially with Triple H going to the red brand. CM Punk should get another chance as a top dog on Smackdown, especially since he comes with the briefcase. I have really high hopes for the Straight Edge Superstar in the coming year.
LOSER: Mr. Kennedy. How the mighty have fallen. Two years ago Kennedy was the big "last pick" for the Raw brand at the draft, last year he was supposed to be a big one, right before Triple H, and this year he gets bumped down to the Supplemental Draft. Hopefully he is able to move up the rankings, but it seems to be very problematic for him on Raw, since Cena, HBK, Triple H and Batista are all higher up than he is on the face side of things. A heel turn would be very welcomed, but he would need to feud (and presumably win a few) against one of those four big faces, and I wonder if that is going to happen in the near future.
WINNER: The Big Show. Sure, he won't move too much no matter which brand he's on, but this allows him to keep his on-screen association with Vickie Guerrero, which should keep him near the top of the card for the time being. However, without Vickie around he would have be just languishing like he was this time last year.
LOSER: Montel Vontavious Porter. I love the guy, but he just doesn't feel right on Raw. While I do applaud the move to freshen him up (especially given his long losing streak), I do question having him on Raw, especially since he recently turned face. However, if he (like Kennedy) makes a heel turn, there is some potential there, I just don't see it working well for both of them, and to have them both do it in short succession could be damaging.
WINNER: John Morrison. Be prepared to start calling him the "Friday Night Delight", as he is set to take Smackdown by storm. Fresh match ups with Rey Mysterio and Jeff Hardy are a liscence to print money. Morrison is really set to have a great year, and I for one, can't wait.
LOSER: The Miz. On the other hand, there is Morrison's former partner, The Miz. I don't see how a move to Raw does him any good, other than by getting him away from Morrison. He was working as a joke on Smackdown, until the fall of 2007 when he paired up with the Shaman of Sexy. This helped him move up, especially on ECW, but he is likely to get very lost in the shuffle on Raw.
WINNER: Vladmir Kozlov. A number of people have complained about this move, but I think it's probably for the best. Kozlov had really done all that he could on Smackdown, and was really hurting after a series of loses to HBK, The Undertaker, and Triple H. He should get plenty of time on ECW, and I could see a Mark Henry-esque title reign sometime over the course of the year.
LOSER: THE Brian Kendrick. One of the big winners from last year's draft looks to be in trouble here. He was able to move up the card, and even get a shock of a place in the Smackdown scramble match at Unforgiven. However, he has reportedly been in the doghouse for a while, so expect him to have a rough go on Monday nights. Also, him being split from Ezekial Jackson looks to be damaging for him.
WINNER: Rey Mystero. I really didn't like Rey-Rey on Raw, it never made much sense to me. There is something definetively "Smackdown" about the little guy, and I think that it's in his best long term interest to be on this brand.
LOSER: DJ Gabriel. Sure he wasn't drafted, but the only reason for watching him (i.e. Alicia Fox) was drafted to Smackdown. I think that he can count his days numbered soon.
WINNER: Chris Jericho. Easily my favourite pick of the draft! In the year since Jericho came back, he was matched up with all of the top names on Raw, and even had to go to the Hall of Fame for fresh Wrestlemania opponents. This switch to Smackdown gives him a whole new set of big names to match up with, and it should give him a chance for a long term world title run in the future.
LOSER: The Colons. Not sure how I feel about them going to Raw. I liked their spot on Smackdown, and felt that it was giving them a nice amount of time to do their thing and get over, both in the ring and outside of it. Also, Smackdown was supposedly the show with the large latino viewers, I question having two large latino stars getting moved from that network.
WINNER: Matt Hardy. My first thought here was a very clear "what the hell are they doing?" but upon reflection, I think that this has potential to be a great move. See, no matter what Matt would do, he would forever be connected to Jeff, and it would be hard to really seperate either of them while they both remain on the same brand. Matt has been a great heel of late, and if he gets matched up with some new big names on Raw, he should have a great chance to climb the ladder, especially since Raw is so short on big heels at the moment. I really think that this has a chance to really see Matt Hardy climb the ladder, as a feud with John Cena would be all kinds of awesome.
That just about covers everyone, I think that most other moves (Kane, Melina, Maryse) were more or less lateral moves, I guess as always, we'll have to see what happens.
Until next time,