The WWE Draft is an annual event that takes place to shake up the rosters of the two main brands, RAW and SmackDown. This draft allows for fresh storylines, new rivalries, and unexpected alliances. In 2023, the WWE Draft once again brought excitement and anticipation among wrestling fans worldwide. In this article, we will provide a comprehensive list of all the draft picks for both RAW and SmackDown, highlighting the superstars who switched brands and the potential impact it could have on the WWE landscape.
RAW Draft Picks:
- Roman Reigns: The Universal Champion, Roman Reigns, stayed on SmackDown, ensuring the continuation of his dominant reign on the blue brand.
- Drew McIntyre: RAW acquired the former WWE Champion Drew McIntyre, bringing his formidable presence and intensity to the red brand.
- Becky Lynch: RAW secured the services of “The Man” Becky Lynch, making her return to the red brand after a hiatus. Her presence will undoubtedly inject excitement into the RAW women’s division.
- Seth Rollins: “The Monday Night Messiah” Seth Rollins remained on RAW, where he has been a key figure for several years.
- AJ Styles: RAW acquired AJ Styles, a decorated veteran who brings his exceptional in-ring skills and charismatic persona to the red brand.
- Bianca Belair: SmackDown Women’s Champion Bianca Belair stayed on the blue brand, ensuring her continued reign as one of the top female athletes in WWE.
- Big E: The Intercontinental Champion Big E was drafted to RAW, potentially setting the stage for new feuds and championship opportunities for the powerhouse.
- Edge: RAW acquired the legendary Edge, who returned to WWE in 2020 after a lengthy absence. His presence on RAW promises exciting matchups and compelling storylines.
- Rhea Ripley: RAW retained Rhea Ripley, the former NXT Women’s Champion, who has made a significant impact since her main roster debut.
- Bobby Lashley: The WWE Champion Bobby Lashley remained on RAW, where he has been dominant in the heavyweight division.
SmackDown Draft Picks:
- Brock Lesnar: In a major shakeup, Brock Lesnar returned to WWE and was drafted to SmackDown. The Beast Incarnate’s arrival on the blue brand adds immense star power and unpredictability.
- Charlotte Flair: SmackDown acquired Charlotte Flair, one of the most accomplished female wrestlers in WWE history. Her presence strengthens an already impressive women’s division.
- Randy Orton: “The Viper” Randy Orton remained on SmackDown, continuing his legacy as one of WWE’s most tenacious and successful superstars.
- Sasha Banks: SmackDown retained Sasha Banks, a multi-time champion and one of the most popular women’s wrestlers in the industry.
- Finn Balor: RAW’s loss was SmackDown’s gain as Finn Balor was drafted to the blue brand. Balor’s return to SmackDown opens up new possibilities for rivalries and championship opportunities.
- Bayley: SmackDown secured the services of Bayley, a former SmackDown Women’s Champion known for her exceptional in-ring abilities and charismatic personality.
- Keith Lee: RAW’s loss was SmackDown’s gain once again as Keith Lee was drafted to the blue brand. Lee’s combination of size, athleticism, and charisma makes him a valuable addition to SmackDown.
- Shinsuke Nakamura: SmackDown retained Shinsuke Nakamura, a former NXT Champion and one of the most charismatic performers on the roster.
- The Usos: SmackDown retained the tag team of The Usos, ensuring the continuation of their successful run on the blue brand.
- Alexa Bliss: SmackDown acquired Alexa Bliss, a unique and captivating performer who adds an element of unpredictability to the women’s division.
Impact and Potential Storylines:
The WWE Draft 2023 has undoubtedly shaken up both RAW and SmackDown, creating new opportunities for fresh matchups and compelling storylines. The acquisition of Brock Lesnar by SmackDown has the potential to set up intriguing feuds with top stars on the blue brand, including Roman Reigns. Similarly, the return of Becky Lynch to RAW opens up possibilities for dream matches against the likes of Charlotte Flair and Sasha Banks.
The draft also allows for the development of new rivalries and alliances. Drew McIntyre’s move to RAW could set the stage for intense battles with Bobby Lashley or a potential clash with Seth Rollins. Finn Balor’s return to SmackDown presents exciting possibilities for matchups against Randy Orton or Brock Lesnar.
Additionally, the draft provides an opportunity for rising stars to shine. Superstars like Rhea Ripley, Bianca Belair, and Keith Lee have the chance to further establish themselves on their respective brands and potentially challenge for championships.
The WWE Draft 2023 has brought significant changes to the RAW and SmackDown rosters, resulting in a fresh and invigorating landscape for the world of professional wrestling. The acquisition of notable superstars, the return of legends, and the potential for new rivalries and storylines have created a buzz of excitement among fans. As the dust settles from the draft, the WWE Universe eagerly awaits the unfolding of these new chapters in the ongoing saga of sports entertainment.