Welcome to the live ongoing results page for the 2019 WWE Superstar Shake-up! This week’s episodes of Monday Night Raw and SmackDown Live will feature trades between the two rosters, as well as talent from the NXT roster being called up to the main roster.
While there is no longer a brand split in the sense of a rivalry between two general managers, the separation of brands is still in tact, and with Becky Lynch holding both women’s titles in particular, it will be interesting to see how the rosters shape up.
This post will be updated to reflect all current trades between rosters throughout the broadcasts of Raw and SmackDown, followed by an eventual review assessment by yours truly.
Stay tuned for updates and keep refreshing for the latest news throughout the night!
SUPERSTARS TRADED TO MONDAY NIGHT RAW
The following superstars have now been moved over to the Raw roster as of April 15, 2019:
- The Miz
- Aleister Black
- The Viking Experience (formerly known as War Raiders Ivar/Hanson and Erik/Rowe)
- Cedric Alexander
- Andrade with Zelina Vega
- Rey Mysterio
- The Usos
- Eric Young
- Lacey Evans
- AJ Styles
SUPERSTARS TRADED TO SMACKDOWN LIVE
The following superstars have now been moved over to the SmackDown roster as of April 16, 2019:
- Finn Balor (with the Intercontinental Championship, unless he loses it to a Raw star this Sunday, although it’s important to note that Samoa Joe was supposedly planned to have a spot on Raw last night and it was cut due to him being sick, so the plan may be to move Joe to Raw after this Shake-up and just hope nobody notices or cares)
- Lars Sullivan
- Ember Moon
- Kairi Sane
- Buddy Murphy
- Roman Reigns
- Mickie James, Liv Morgan, Apollo Crews and Chad Gable have been stated on WWE’s Twitter to also have moved to SmackDown, although they weren’t announced on the show itself, for some reason.
- In another update, Heavy Machinery is now on SmackDown, too.
My gut reaction to this is the same it pretty much always is: fear and confusion. I don’t have the utmost faith in WWE to be able to pull this off.
The Superstar Shake-up is an opportunity to fix the problems that have been plaguing the two shows for the past year (or sometimes, even longer) and yet, I feel like every year, they manage to make things more complicated and potentially worse than they could have, while ignoring some very obvious improvements that stare them right in the face.
As far as the confusion goes, why are the NXT tag team champions on Raw? Why are they Ivar and Erik now? Who in the hell thought The Viking Experience was a good name change? Why are they suddenly heels who want the crowd to chant “war” with them like they did when they were the babyface War Raiders?
I guess the feud between AJ Styles and Randy Orton is over, as well as the hope that Seth Rollins wouldn’t have to continue to fight Drew McIntyre, Bobby Lashley and Baron Corbin. Those three really needed to be broken up in some way.
It’s strange that Nikki Cross was flat out ignored and not given any kind of confirmation, even in the post-SmackDown update on Twitter. Heavy Machinery got a tweet confirmation after the round of 4, at least. I guess that shows how little WWE cares about them.
The lack of Samoa Joe moving to Raw makes me think they’re just going to announce that next week on Raw and pretend like it isn’t strange that they waited until after the “two-day trade event” to trade someone. This is WWE. They consistently change the rules and tell everyone to just deal with it. Logic doesn’t have a place in this company.
When it comes to the fear, there are a few things that stand out to me.
I don’t think Elias being on SmackDown is a good fit, as there’s less time for him to have a spot every week. In fact, once they realize the logistics of that, I feel like they’re going to move him back over to Raw by the time SummerSlam comes around.
Not having anybody added to the 205 Live roster is really going to hurt that, as Cedric Alexander and Buddy Murphy leaving means the lineup is very bare.
I’m concerned some people will be lost in the shuffle, namely on Raw, while SmackDown will once again be left to scramble to have enough talent in case anyone gets injured. I’m also not interested in 15 minutes of a 2-hour episode of SmackDown being dedicated to Lars Sullivan every week for the next few months while someone like Apollo Crews exists on the brand just to take Tye Dillinger’s old spot.
There are some positives, though. I’ve never liked The Riott Squad, so I’m glad they’ve split. I thought this pairing of Roode and Gable was a bust, so that’s another positive breakup. Balor and Reigns are great backup options for Kofi Kingston in the main event babyface scene on SmackDown. It’s also cool to see Alexander and Murphy be treated like regular superstars instead of sideline cruiserweights going forward, too.
Like anything, we’ll have to wait to see how this all works out. There’s a chance—albeit extremely slim—that WWE does have a plan in mind. More than likely, this will be a total mess and within a month, they’ll be scrambling to sort out backup options and everything will go to chaos, but maybe even that will be worth the ride.
Join in the discussion and tell us your thoughts on these draft moves in the comments below!